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Police: Electric dog collar used to punish a child

10:37 AM, Oct 30, 2013   |    comments
Paula and Eduardo Montanez of Danbury are facing charges after allegedly using an electric dog collar to punish a child
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A Connecticut couple is facing charges in a child abuse case after investigators discovered that one used an electric dog collar to punish a child in his care, according to police.

Eduardo and Paula Montanez, a husband and wife who live in Danbury, were arrested on Tuesday, five days after a Danbury school employee contacted the state Department of Children and Families regarding suspected child abuse.

A joint investigation by DCF and Danbury police revealed that Eduardo Montanez had used a PetSafe barking collar on a 9-year-old girl in the couple's care. Police said the couple was upset about the girl's progress report, so Montanez put the bark collar around her neck and forced her to bark so the collar would shock her.

Paula Montanez was reportedly present when it happened and did nothing to stop the abuse, police said.

According to police, the girl went back to school and told a teacher about her problems at home. It was not clear if the child is the couple's daughter.

The victim told police the shock collar incident had only happened once, but marks on her neck indicated it might have occurred more often. She also told investigators the couple had beaten her several times. It's not clear when the beatings took place, police said.

Eduardo Montanez, 43, was arrested and charged with third-degree assault, two counts of risk of injury to a minor and cruelty to a person. He was held on a $250,000 bond.

Paula Montanez, 34, was charged with two counts of risk of injury to a minor, conspiracy to commit third-degree assault and conspiracy to commit cruelty to a person. Her bond was set at $200,000.

Both are due in Danbury Superior Court today.

Police said there were no young children in the home. The couple does not have a criminal record in Connecticut but has lived elsewhere. It's not clear if they have been arrested out of state.

The 9-year-old victim is in state custody, police said.

NBC News

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