DA: Chil­dren in Cal­i­for­nia home were stran­gled, wa­ter­boarded

The Maui News - - COUNTY/ IN BRIEF - By JONATHAN J. COOPER and JANIE HAR The As­so­ci­ated Press

FAIR­FIELD, Calif. — Pros­e­cu­tors al­lege in court doc­u­ments filed Wed­nes­day that the 10 chil­dren res­cued from a North­ern Cal­i­for­nia home were punched, kicked, stran­gled, shot with a BB gun and sub­jected to wa­ter­board­ing by their fa­ther and their mother did noth­ing to stop it.

The de­tails of the al­leged abuse were in­cluded in a mo­tion to in­crease the bail of Ina Rogers, 31, who was charged with nine counts of felony child abuse Wed­nes­day in Solano Su­pe­rior Court. Rogers did not en­ter a plea, but has pre­vi­ously de­nied al­le­ga­tions her chil­dren were harmed. She also faces 1 count of child ne­glect in­volv­ing all 10 chil­dren.

“On a con­tin­u­ous ba­sis the chil­dren were get­ting punched, stran­gled, bit­ten, shot with weapons such as cross­bows and bb guns, hit with weapons such as sticks and bats, sub­jected to ‘wa­ter­board­ing’ and hav­ing scald­ing water poured on them,” Solano County Deputy District At­tor­ney Veron­ica Juarez wrote in the bail re­quest.

Since an­nounc­ing Mon­day that they had re­moved the chil­dren from the home where they say tor­ture was car­ried out “for sadis­tic pur­poses,” pros­e­cu­tors have re­fused to dis­cuss fur­ther de­tails of the al­le­ga­tions against Rogers and her hus­band Jonathan Allen, 29. He has pleaded not guilty to nine counts of felony child abuse and seven counts of felony tor­ture. He is be­ing held on $5.2 mil­lion bail.

Records show the 10 chil­dren re­moved from the house March 31 are 6 months to 12 years old, but the doc­u­ments do not spec­ify which child suf­fered which in­juries.

The mo­tion states that when Fair­field Po­lice ar­rived at the two-story house in a sub­urb 46 miles north­east of San Fran­cisco on March 31, they found the chil­dren “hud­dled to­gether on the liv­ing room floor” in a home lit­tered with fe­ces and trash.

“The chil­dren ap­peared to be skit­tish and spoke with speech im­ped­i­ments,” she wrote.

Juarez al­leges Rogers as­sisted in the abuse and “dis­suaded the chil­dren” from re­port­ing their in­juries, which in­cluded bro­ken arms.

On Wed­nes­day, Judge Wil­liam J. Pen­der­gast set bail at $495,000 for Rogers, say­ing she “may not be a dan­ger to the pub­lic at large, but th­ese charges make clear she is a dan­ger to the chil­dren.”

It’s un­clear whether any Cal­i­for­nia gov­ern­ment agen­cies had an op­por­tu­nity to in­ter­vene sooner or knew of tur­moil in the house­hold.

Solano County court records show that Allen was charged with four felonies in 2011, in­clud­ing cor­po­ral in­jury, as­sault with a firearm and crim­i­nal threats in a case in­volv­ing his wife, iden­ti­fied by her ini­tials, I.R.

Pros­e­cu­tors al­leged Allen used a .22 cal­iber re­volver in some of the crimes.

He pleaded no con­test to cor­po­ral in­jury as part of a deal with pros­e­cu­tors. He was sen­tenced to 180 days and three years of pro­ba­tion. Pros­e­cu­tors dropped the other charges.

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