(warning, possible triggers follow)
Just a week before Jerry Sandusky is all but certain to be sent to prison for the rest of his life, there's another horrifying case of suspected child abuse out of Pennsylvania. A deputy state attorney general and his wife are charged with abusing two Ethiopian children they adopted earlier this spring.
Deputy Attorney General Douglas Barbour and his wife, Kristey Barbour, were arrested Thursday by Allegheny County Police.Griffin broke the story last night, and it was all he could do to keep his composure when he filed it. See for yourself (sorry, it won't embed).
The Franklin Park couple faces two counts of endangering the welfare of a child, aggravated assault and simple assault.
Sources close to the investigation tell KDKA’s Marty Griffin the couple allegedly tried to starve their 6-year-old adopted son who had to be hospitalized with malnutrition.
Sources also indicate the couple’s 18-month-old adopted daughter has five different bone fractures of varying ages.
It's hard not to see why. According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, both kids appear to have gone through a horrific ordeal.
The Barbours' daughter is the victim of physical child abuse, including abusive head trauma, according to Rachel Berger of Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, whose examinations of the children was referenced in the criminal complaint.Berger found that the abuse was so severe that she actually recommended that the Barbours be banned from any contact with the kids--the first time she can recall making such a recommendation in her 14 years as part of the hospital's child abuse task force. She even went as far to say that the girl could be killed if the Barbours are allowed to take her home.
Ms. Barbour told hospital personnel last month that their daughter has a history of banging her head, but the extent of her injuries and the fact that she had no underlying medical problem does not support that, Dr. Berger said in the complaint.
The Barbours' 6-year-old son is "the victim of significant neglect and possible emotional abuse over a prolonged period of time," Dr. Berger said in the complaint.
Doctors who evaluated the boy determined his skin lesions were likely the result of ongoing contact with urine. He was experiencing weight loss at home but ate voraciously and gained weight -- without medical treatment -- when fed at the hospital, according to hospital personnel cited in the complaint.
The boy told a doctor that when he soiled his pants, his parents would make him stand or eat dinner in the bathroom, according to the criminal complaint. Authorities noted his room contained no furnishings, decorations or window treatments: only a mattress on the floor with sheets.
Douglas Barbour is currently suspended without pay, since he's charged with felonies.
According to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, the boy was taken to urgent care due to signs of an infection, and Douglas Barbour made a comment that would send a chill down most anyone's spine.
During the visit, when told the boy’s body temperature was 93.6 degrees, Douglas Barbour asked: “Would that be from being in the bathroom cold, wet and naked for an hour?”The boy was admitted to the hospital after doctors at the clinic also found he had breathing and skin problems. It turned out he'd lost almost 10 pounds since coming to this country, but gained almost seven while in the hospital--and without any additional treatment.
Child abuse is horrifying enough, but especially so when it involves someone who is sworn to uphold the law. If this is true, the Barbours need to have the book thrown at them.