Florida woman beat adopted son with dog chain, chipped his teeth with pliers over years of heartless abuse
Hyler has four adopted children and she has abused all of them in some way
PACE, FLORIDA: A 47-year-old woman was arrested after being accused of beating her 14-year-old adopted son with a dog chain repeatedly over several years.
According to the Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Office, Patricia Hyler was charged with aggravated child abuse after being arrested on May 8. She was accused of abusing the unidentified victim, bruising his arms and head, chipping his teeth with pliers and making him sleep on a dirty concrete floor for years.
She also allegedly forced the teenager to bathe in public by making him stand naked in the front yard and spraying him with a hose, Pensacola News Journal reported.
Santa Rosa County Sheriff Bob Johnson said that the alleged crime was one of the worst cases of child abuse he has encountered in his 38-year career in law enforcement.
"I'll be honest with you, as a father it pisses me off, is what it does," Johnson said at a press conference Monday, May 11, where he announced Hyler's arrest. "Somebody that can do that to another human is bad enough. But you start doing that to a child, yeah, we take it personally. We really do."
Florida Department of Children and Families referred to the victim as the "target child" because although Hyler had four adopted children and subjected all of them to some or the other form of abuse over an extensive period of time, she took "special interest" in the 14-year-old victim. The accused even made sure that the victim came in contact with as fewer people as possible so that no one had the chance to report the abuse that he was reportedly going through.
"She abused this child pretty severely, but she took him out of school and homeschooled him for two years because she knew that if she sent him to school, obviously, somebody would report it,” Johnson said. "So she kept him at home."
The victim had been living with Hyler and her husband for the past seven and a half years. The authorities became aware of the accusations against Hyler when one of her adopted children texted a witness about the alleged abuse. After learning about the accused's criminal conduct, the witness alerted the police.
While Johnson said that additional criminal charges are expected to be leveled against Hyler as the investigation progresses, he also made it clear that charges are not expected to be brought against her husband, who worked long hours and hence remained absent from home when the alleged instances of abuse took place.
Investigators said that they have also interviewed other children that Hyler had adopted in the past, who had since left her home. Two of those people admitted to witnessing a number of abuses carried out by Hyler during the time that they stayed with her.
"I don’t know how you fix something like that," Johnson said. "When you do something to a child, that is so horrendous."
Hyler is being held at the Santa Rosa County Jail without bond. Investigation continues into the matter.