A nurse at the Harris County jail was arrested Tuesday, accused of watching her boyfriend whip her 19-month-old daughter with a wire clothes hanger and her 12-year-old son with an extension cord.
Lois Renee Wiltz, 32, was charged with child abuse by omission and injury to a child.
Carlton Prejean, 31, who lived with Wiltz was charged with injury to a child, said Harris County District Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Donna Hawkins.
Child Protective Services spokeswoman Estella Olguin said Wiltz has three children, the son and daughter and a 6-month-old child. Prejean fathered the younger two children and has lived with Wiltz for about three years.
The boy told authorities he was beaten on the backside leaving marks, scars, bruising and open wounds beginning in October 2005 and continuing to Dec. 4, when investigators intervened, court records show.
He said Prejean also hit his 19-month-old half-sister with a wire hanger.
Photos of the children’s injuries corroborate the boy’s story, court records show.
Olguin said the children no longer live with the couple. The 12-year-old lives with his maternal grandmother, and the younger children are in foster care.
At a CPS hearing Dec. 17, Wiltz testified she was the victim of domestic abuse, Olguin said. She still can visit her children, but Prejean is not allowed to see them.
Court records show Prejean was sentenced to four days in jail after pleading guilty last April to assault of a family member, a class A misdemeanor. Since 2004, he has pleaded guilty to at least three other misdemeanors, including theft and evading detention. He also pleaded guilty to a state jail felony for possession of marijuana.
Prosecutors Tuesday alleged that Wiltz saw her son beaten and did not intervene.
“The defendant admitted that she failed to ask about the other injuries she would see because she ‘does not want to see how bad her son is injured,’ and she ‘made the decision that if she did not see them then it did not happen,’ ” according to court records.
Wiltz remained in jail Tuesday in lieu of $35,000 bail. It was unclear whether Prejean had been arrested. Neither could not be reached for comment, and no attorney was listed on court records for either.
No one answered the door at their northeast Harris County home near Wallisville.
Harris County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Alan Bernstein said Wiltz has been employed as a licensed vocational nurse at the jail since May 1999.
He said Wiltz’s employment status is under internal review because of the charges.
Filed under: Civil Liberties, Prison Industrial Complex Tagged: | Alan Bernstein, Carlton Prejean, Donna Hawkins, Estella Olguin, Harris County, Harris County District Attorney, Harris County Sheriff's Office, Lois Renee Wiltz, prisons, Texas, youth