Couple, third family member face 104 charges in 'disturbing' child, animal abuse probe: Edmonton police

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A southeast Edmonton couple and a third adult family member are facing a total of 104 charges after six children, a grandchild and family pets suffered years of physical and emotional abuse, say city police.

“Without question, this is one of the most disturbing cases of child abuse that our Child Protection investigators have ever seen,” Staff Sgt. Ryan Tebb, of the police Child Protection Section, said in a Wednesday news release.

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“These children have been subjected to years of physical and emotional pain, dysfunction that no child should have to deal with in their lives.”

Child protection officers began investigating Friday, Dec. 1, after reports of significant child abuse being perpetrated by a 34-year-old Edmonton father, his 37-year-old common law partner, and a 25-year-old male family member against the father’s six children and one grandchild, with the kids ranging in age between two and 13.

The children were removed from the home the same day, police said.

On Monday, Dec. 4, the children were taken to the Zebra Child and Youth Advocacy Centre where they were interviewed, providing investigators with details surrounding prolonged physical and emotional abuse.

It was reported to police that the children were frequently beaten, strangled and malnourished for years. The accused father is alleged to have regularly subjected the children to punishments, said investigators, whereby they were forced to hold a painful physical position with their hands and feet on the floor for several hours. The accused father also used a shock collar in some cases.

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The father is also alleged by police to have reportedly beaten one of the family’s five dogs frequently with a broom handle and further tortured it by poking it with a stick through the kennel cage.

On Thursday, Dec. 14, police converged on the family’s south-side residence, arresting three adults.

The accused father and common law partner are each facing 45 charges each of aggravated assault, uttering threats, unlawful confinement, assault with a weapon, assault causing bodily harm and animal cruelty offences. The other adult male family member is facing seven charges of assault with a weapon and seven charges of assault.

The names of the three accused are not being released to protect the identity of the children. A publication ban is also in place.

Investigators said all of the children have been placed in foster care. The dogs were also removed from the home.

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