HPD: Mom says she stayed with man who beat son because she had ‘nowhere to go’

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by KHOU.com staff

khou.com

Posted on November 5, 2012 at 6:11 PM

Updated Monday, Nov 5 at 6:50 PM

HOUSTON—A Houston mother is accused of doing absolutely nothing while her son was repeatedly beaten, tortured and burned by his stepdad, according to Houston police.

Nicole Suarez, 24, was charged with felony injury to a child by omission.

Suarez’s son sustained multiple bruising to the body, old and new rib fractures, as well as lighter burn to his little fingers, investigators said. His stepdad, Ruben Ramirez-Vasquez, allegedly beat the child on a number of occasions, which caused all the injuries.

The child said Ramirez-Vasquez hit him with a closed fist, scratched his face and burned him with a “candle thing” while he was standing in the corner for timeout, according to court documents.The little boy said he did not know why his stepdad did such things to him, but his 7-year-old brother said he knew why.

The older boy said his baby brother got into “big trouble” for using the bathroom on himself. He told investigators he witnessed his stepdad hit his brother in the head and back, and also saw when he burned him.

Suarez told investigators she knew the stepfather hit the child with a belt on occasions and made him stand in the corner with his arms and leg out as a form of discipline, but denied ever seeing any bruising.

She did, however, see the burns the day before CPS removed the children, but said she did not take the boy to the hospital because she did not think it was “that bad.”

Medical records revealed the child had unexplained bruises six months before, including chronic subdural hematomas and rib fractures.

This time, X-rays revealed multiple rib fractures, in addition to a fractured and burned hand. The child also had a healed wound on his groin that was consistent with a cigarette burn.

Doctors determined the injuries were consistent with abuse that occurred on multiple occasions.

When investigators asked why she stayed with the man knowing he was abusing her son, she told them because she had nowhere to go.

Investigators decided the mother was neglectful because she saw her son’s bruises and did not get him any help.

Suarez’s bail was set at $20,000.

Ramirez-Vasquez was charged with felony injury to a child. He is still on the run.

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