By Shereen Siewert
A Wausau couple is facing criminal charges, accused of harming a 13-year-old boy who was treated at a local hospital for wounds suffered during a late night altercation Sunday.
Victoria Hignite, 34, faces charges of child neglect where the consequence is bodily harm, and obstructing an officer. Police say the child neglect charge stems from her alleged failure to allow the child access to medical care.
Hignite’s partner, 31-year-old Evaristo Canales Torres, faces charges of child abuse-intentionally causing great bodily harm, and strangulation/suffocation. He is accused of strangling the boy during an argument.
The charges against Hignite and Canales Torres were filed Nov. 11 in Marathon County Circuit Court.
According to the criminal complaint, police were called just after 10:30 p.m. to a home in the 900 block of Washington Street in Wausau for a report of a 13-year-old boy who had been strangled. Paramedics also arrived on scene to treat the boy, who had scratches and red marks on his neck, according to the police report.
Police say Hignite, who was visibly intoxicated, denied there had been a physical altercation, telling officers there was a verbal argument at the home and said the boy had a “big ass mouth” and a “real anger problem.”
But a witness told police he saw Canales Torres strangling the boy and tried to pull the man off the child. Hignite initially refused to allow paramedics to transport the boy to a local hospital , but relented after a representative from social services threatened to take custody of the boy if Hignite did not allow the boy to be treated.
The boy was to Aspirus Wausau Hospital for treatment of his injuries, and then to Ascension Saint Clare’s Hospital for a forensic exam.
During an initial appearance Nov. 11, Canales Torres was ordered held on a $10,000 cash bond, the first $3,000 of which must be paid in cash. He remains jailed as of Nov. 12, with a preliminary hearing set for Nov. 20. Circuit Judge Greg Strasser also ordered Canales Torres not to have any contact whatsoever with anyone younger than 18 and to maintain absolute sobriety, staying away from bars and taverns.
Hignite was released Tuesday on a $950 signature bond and ordered to have no contact with the alleged victim. She is also ordered to maintain absolute sobriety. A preliminary hearing for Hignite is set for Jan. 3.