Police Say Stepmother Kidnapped, Tortured Stepson
Woman accused of torturing mentally challenged stepsonPhoto: Video by kmtv.com
Council Bluffs, Iowa-Police say a Council Bluffs woman, her husband, and son are in the county jail Wednesday night after she tortured, abused and locked up her mentally handicapped stepson at their home.
Rebecca Beyer is charged with first-degree kidnapping and willful injury causing serious injury. James Beyer Jr. and Ryan Smith are charged with first-degree kidnapping. The charges focus on abuse that occurred over the days of February 17-19th. The 20-year-old ran away from home, which lead to the investigation and subsequent charges.
County Attorney Matt Wilbur says they are focusing events that happened just three days, but fears that the abuse was going on far longer.
"This is pretty bad. It's a bad set of facts," he said.
According to court documents obtained by KMTV, Rebecca Beyer would "leave him chained up" with a wrist padlock and a dog leash. The documents say she "repeatedly burned him with a fork and spoon that she heated on the stove." some of those burns were in his private areas. He was "given a bucket to urinate or defecate in", and he said they would "lock him outside in cold temperatures and taunt him from inside the house."
The 20-year-old was able to run away from home on February 19. He was found wearing little clothing, crawling on his hands and knees outside a gas station, Wilbur said. Someone took him to the Joshua House. It's a men's emergency shelter that serves homeless people in the area.
"It was really cold out and he was wearing shorts, a real light shirt, no shoes. The shelter staff kind of knew there was something going on," Brandy Waller, with the Joshua House said.
Wilbur says that items collected from the home are still off at the lab being tested for DNA.
During the investigation, court documents say police found what "appeared to be a homemade restraint made of hardware chain that could easily be padlocked;" a 5-gallon bucket that the 20-year-old said he had been forced to use as a toilet; a spoon with burnt residue on it found on the kitchen counter; and boxes that contained a club covered with sharp spikes and a sword cane.
Each is being held on a $100,000 bond. A bond review with a judge is scheduled for Thursday.
The preliminary court date for the three is July 1.