BREMERTON — Allegations of child abuse have rattled one Kitsap County neighborhood and has a 13-year-old boy in protective custody after police said his older brother and sister-in-law tortured him for not doing his chores.
Bremerton police found the wounded 13-year-old boy on a bus stop bench Friday evening. They rushed him to the hospital where the teen told detectives a terrible story of abuse that included beatings, starvation and being forced to sleep naked in a dog kennel.
Police arrested the teen’s 27-year-old brother, Brandon Gunn and Brandon’s wife, 34-year-old Viviana Gunn.
Kitsap County prosecutors filed first-degree kidnapping and unlawful imprisonment charges, along with four counts of second-degree assault, against the couple Tuesday, the Kitsap Sun reported.
“These are really horrific — they go way beyond the pale,” Kitsap County sheriff’s deputy Scott Wilson said.
The couple were the teen’s guardians and have been taking care of him for nearly two years. The rest of the family is in Georgia and the teenage boy was being taken care of by his brother because of some kind of issues with his family in Georgia, but police did not offer any more detail about those issues.
Neighbors said the Gunns moved in at the end of June and investigators said that’s when the abuse started.
The boy was zip-tied to a chair and beaten with a baseball bat until he lost consciousness, he said. Police also said the Gunns hit the teen’s feet with a hammer, cut him with a knife and sprayed alcohol directly into his open wounds. Two weeks ago, the boy managed to escape and was wandering Kitsap County when he was discovered by police in Bremerton.
“The officers on scene knew that he needed to be seen, got him to the hospital right away and into the emergency room,” Wilson said.
While neighbors struggle to comprehend the horrors that allegedly happened at the home, police are reminding people to reach out and that if you see something, say something.
The Gunns are being held in the Kitsap County Jail on $500,000 bail each.