An East Texas couple is accused of locking a 4-year-old boy in a dog kennel and forcing him to drink his own urine.
Matthew McMahon, 29, and Randa Askew Faust McMahon, 36, of Shelby County were arrested June 2 and charged with first-degree injury to a child, according to local reports.
It wasn’t until late last week that more details of the abuse emerged after KTRE reported on the shocking particulars of the couple’s arrest affidavits.
An investigation into the Shelbyville couple kicked off in late May after authorities got word of abuse allegations.
But when investigators stopped at the McMahon home, they learned the child and his stepmother were in North Carolina.
In the meantime, officials decided to interview Randa McMahon’s other three children, including a teenager who recounted a horrific story of prolonged abuse of the toddler.
The older child said the 4-year-old was routinely made to sleep in a dog kennel because of his bed-wetting. He was allegedly left in a cargo trailer once without food or drink for 24 hours.
Another time he was forced to drink his own urine in retaliation for wetting himself.
The teenager also said the boy was sometimes whipped with a stick until he bled, according to the arrest affidavit.
One of Randa McMahon’s adult children corroborated some of the teen’s shocking claims, but justified the treatment, saying “children could safely go for several days without water,” according to court documents.
Another of McMahon’s adult children said the toddler “has a problem with not wanting to eat,” and that her mother’s decision to withhold water was a punishment for refusing to eat.
Matthew McMahon reportedly knew about and condoned his wife’s abuse of the boy, investigators allege.
The couple was arrested in Somervall County, just days after the investigation began.
The couple was initially held on $200,000 bail but later released after a judge granted a bail reduction, according to county jail records.
The boy was taken into CPS custody.