THE COLUMBIAN, Vancouver, Washington, Sunday, 5 September 2004.

Police, Fire Report: Father arrested; son in hospital

Sunday, September 5, 2004
KELLY ADAMS and JOHN BRANTON Columbian staff writers

A Ridgefield man was arrested on suspicion of first-degree assault of a child after he allegedly attempted to circumcise his 8-year-old son.

Clark County sheriff's Sgt. Tony Barnes said the man, whose name is being withheld to protect the victim's privacy, claimed reading the Bible led him to try to circumcise his child Friday night.

The man, believed to be in his 30s, took the boy into the bathroom and used a hunting knife for the procedure, Barnes said.

"When he couldn't stop the bleeding, he called 911," Barnes said.

Firefighters arrived to begin treatment while deputies took the man into custody. He remained in the Clark County Jail on Saturday night.

The child was taken to Southwest Washington Medical Center, where he received several stitches. Barnes said the case will be referred to Child Protective Services. CPS has been the family's home before to check on the nine children living there.

The victim's mother was home at the time of the assault, Barnes said, but it was not clear if she knew what the father was doing. She rode with the boy to the hospital.

"Just when you think you've seen everything," said Barnes, a 20-year law enforcement veteran. "This is just bizarre."

(File created 10 September 2004)