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When a 7-year-old boy couldn’t memorize the Bible, his parents used a ‘brutal method to discipline the child’!

Reports reveal a harrowing story of abuse and tragedy as 7-year-old Ethan, under the guardianship of his parents, 48-year-old Timothy and 35-year-old Tina, endured unimaginable suffering.

Appointed as Ethan’s guardians by the court, the couple, it appears, demanded more than just a home for the young boy—they demanded strict adherence to their religious beliefs. Their tragic journey began when they instructed Ethan, along with his twin sibling, to memorize passages from the Bible.

However, when Ethan failed to meet their expectations, a series of cruel and deadly punishments ensued. Timothy, taking the lead, ordered the young boy to carry a heavy wooden log around their property for hours as a consequence of his failure to memorize Bible verses.

The family’s property held a grim path used for punishing Ethan whenever he fell short of their religious standards. The log he was expected to carry weighed a staggering forty-four pounds, far too heavy for the little boy to bear alone.

Although Timothy inflicted much of the punishment, he delegated the supervision to Ethan’s fifteen-year-old brother, Damian, who followed his father’s orders to the letter.

Damian resorted to physical violence, kicking, hitting, and even pushing Ethan’s face into the icy ground when he couldn’t keep up. In a particularly cruel act, Damian rolled the log over Ethan’s chest, intensifying the young boy’s suffering. One horrific punishment led to Ethan’s burial in a massive pile of snow, resulting in his tragic death from hypothermia due to the harsh weather conditions.

Ethan’s ordeal didn’t stop there. He suffered severe blunt-force trauma to his head, chest, and abdomen, compounding his agony. When questioned by authorities, Damian initially denied any wrongdoing but later confessed to the burial as part of a punishment for failing to memorize thirteen Bible verses. This admission led to Damian’s charges of first-degree reckless homicide and additional counts related to Ethan’s murder.

Timothy, too, faced severe consequences, with charges including felony murder and others tied to Ethan’s untimely demise. Tina, though charged with failing to prevent harm to a child, also found herself entangled in the grim events surrounding Ethan’s suffering and death.

Moriah Ballard
Moriah Ballard
Moriah Ballard joined the KPRC 2 digital team in the fall of 2021. Prior to becoming a digital content producer in Southeast Texas and a Houstonian, Moriah was an award-winning radio host in her hometown of Lorain, Ohio and previously worked as a producer/content creator in Cleveland. Her faith, family, and community are her top passions.


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