WOODLAND, Wash. – Woodland police arrested a woman who they said abused and seriously injured her boyfriend’s 3-year-old son.
Police said Teresa Hernandez, 33, used a hot iron to burn the back of the boy’s hands and pushed him down a flight of stairs, causing a brain injury after his head hit the tile floor.
It happened at a Woodland apartment complex on Wednesday.
Emergency room staff at Legacy Salmon Creek Hospital in Vancouver called police after they treated the boy’s injuries.
The boy was later taken to a Portland hospital where he is in serious condition, police said.
Police interviewed the victim’s father and Hernandez.
Police said Hernandez confessed to the crimes after first trying to pass it off as an accident.
A detective said Hernandez said the boy screamed and tried to pull it away but, for at least five seconds, she pressed down and refused to let go.
Police arrested Hernandez and took her to the Cowlitz County Jail. She faces two counts of first-degree child abuse.
Detectives said that Hernandez and her husband have four children and stepchildren between 1 and 7 years old who live at their Woodland home.
The children are now in protective custody while police investigate.
Police said she told her husband it was an accident, but he decided his son needed to see a doctor.
Police said that at this point they don't believe the father knew about the alleged abuse. But police are still investigating.