Robert Smith (pictured) was cuffed by New Orleans police Monday and charged with one count of cruelty to a juvenile when he allegedly placed a 10-year-old boy into a hot clothes dryer as punishment for neglecting to hand in documents at school, The Times-Picayune reports.
According to police, the unnamed child’s mother was admitted into a hospital and left her son in Smith’s care. On Oct. 29 of last year, according to the warrant, a school official noticed the boy’s burns while he was in school. When the child was questioned, he revealed some horrors that he allegedly endured at the hands of Smith.
The boy told the school official that the 34-year-old man whipped him about his torso with a belt, kicked him in the chest, then shoved him into a hot dryer with some clothes that had been in there. The unidentified school official immediately contacted the state’s Department of Children and Family Services about the alleged accusations of abuse. Police were also notified.
The child was again questioned by police child abuse detective Tyra Pruitt on Dec. 5. He told the officer the same information that he had provided to the school official. Pruitt documented in the warrant that the child’s circular burn marks were a perfect match to the air ventilation screen located inside the dryer.