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Mother brutally assaulted daughter for reciting Bible verses incorrectly (slam head in wall, bites, strangles)

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A Middletown woman was arrested after police said she severely assaulted her daughter and kicked her out of her house because the girl incorrectly recited Bible verses to her last week.

Police filed child endangerment charges against Rhonda Kemp Shoffner, 41, of the first block of Genesis Court, following the incident on March 14.

The victim, who is under the age of 13, told police the assault occurred just after she awoke from a nap in her mother’s home about 3 p.m.

Shoffner, who the victim said had been drunk for three days straight, told her daughter to call multiple family members, police said. When they didn’t answer the calls, police said, Shoffner ordered her daughter to get on her knees in the bathroom.

Her daughter knew that meant Shoffner was going to beat her, police said. The victim was scared and pleaded with her mother, according to police in the charging documents.

Police said the victim told her mother, “please don’t hit me. I don’t want to get on my knees.”

Shoffner became enraged and yelled at the victim, telling her “to get on her (expletive) knees,” police said.

The girl complied, and Shoffner began quoting Bible verses, expecting the victim to repeat the lines verbatim, according to police.

Shoffner asked her daughter, “What did God tell the man to do with his son?”

When the girl said she did not know, her mother said, “God told the man to kill his son.”

Instead, the victim said, “God said to forgive his son,” and Shoffner grabbed her by the hair and slammed her head into the wall, police said.

Each time the girl incorrectly recited a verse or gave her mother a wrong answer, Shoffner slammed her head into the wall, police said. Shoffner slammed her daughter’s head into the bathroom drywall at least five times, according to police.

The victim tried to use her hands to defend herself, but Shoffner’s kicks connected at least two times, police said. The girl repeatedly begged her mother to stop, but after her mother told her to lie on her back, she complied, police said.

That’s when Shoffner said, “I’m gonna kill you (expletive deleted),” police said, and she started to strangle her daughter and cut off her airway.

The girl feared for her life and tried to fight Shoffner off, according to police. Shoffner bit the girl’s left forearm and then dug her teeth into her left shoulder, police said.

The victim continued to fight her mother off until Shoffner said, “just leave and don’t ever come back.”

The girl grabbed a phone, a coat, sneakers and fled down the street. She called her father, who drove her to the police station.

Police filed charges of aggravated assault against a child, strangulation and terroristic threats.


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