Jean is accused of placing the iron on the center of the boy’s chest and left nipple. A quarter-sized mark in the shape of the tip of an iron and a second, one-inch long scar that may have been from the edge of an iron was on the nipple, police said.
Jean told investigators that while using a belt to spank the boy, he may have burned himself because he moves around a lot while being spanked, the police report said.
The iron was in her hand but was unplugged when she began disciplining him, she told police. She said it may have burned him but she was not sure; she did not intend to burn him and he didn’t tell her he was burned, according to the police report.
“In this case, the mother intentionally and maliciously inflicted injury upon the child as a form of discipline,” Xiques said during a news conference Tuesday outside police headquarters on Pines Boulevard. “That’s just outrageous, to use a hot iron as a type of punishment. It seems more like a form of torture.”
Pembroke Pines police learned of the abuse tip Monday from the Broward Sheriff’s Child Protective Investigations Section, a contractor for the Florida Department of Children and Families, and acted upon it immediately, Xiques said.
Since Feb. 17, the case has been investigated by BSO and another law enforcement agency, according to DCF spokeswoman Paige Patterson-Hughes.
When it was determined Pembroke Pines police had jurisdiction, they became involved on Monday, she said.
“The child was safely placed elsewhere as the investigation began in February,” said Patterson-Hughes. “He was not left in an unsafe situation.”
Citing confidentiality, she said she was not allowed to say exactly when he was removed from the home.
“Investigators have to make a determination how the alleged abuse occurred, whether there was abuse, neglect or abandonment,” Patterson-Hughes said.
Jean is also the mother of a 2-year-old and a 16-year-old. After a shelter hearing Tuesday, the three children were placed in state-licensed foster care. Jean will be allowed to see the two children who were not injured during supervised visits, Patterson-Hughes said.
The police captain emphasized the need for people to report instances of violence toward children.
“Had not someone come forward we would have never known about it,” Xiques said. “Anyone with information regarding a child who may be victimized or has been victimized, please contact police.”
The Florida Department of Children and Families’ child abuse hotline is 1-800-962-2873.