Hawaii man allegedly starved, beat, and burned his girlfriend’s 2-year-old daughter for months, police say

Hawaii police arrested a man on suspicion of child abuse after his girlfriend’s 2-year-old daughter was found starved, deprived of water, beaten, and burned.

Police said they were called by medical workers at the Hilo Medical Center Emergency Room to report severe and suspicious injuries to a girl who had been brought for medical treatment to the emergency room on Saturday at about 2 p.m.

Hawaii Police Criminal Investigation Director Capt. Rio Amon-Wilkins said police met with the staff as well as the mother of the child.

A police report said the girl appeared to be suffering from lack of nutrition as well as water. She also displayed various injuries, including bruises in different stages of healing, a fractured femur and rib in different stages in healing, as well as various burn marks.

The child was flown to Oahu’s Kapiolani Medical Center, where she remains in stable condition.

Investigators found that 31-year-old Clayton Ernest Saragosa was living with the 23-year-old mother of the girl at a home in Mountain View. Police said they believe he had been abusing her over the course of several months.

On Sunday, he was charged with first-degree assault, second-degree assault, abuse of a household member, and two counts of second-degree endangerment of the welfare of a minor.

At the time of Sarasoga’s arrest, four of his biological children were present in the home, and they were taken into protective custody. Later, two of the children, a 12-year-old boy and a 13-year-old boy, were released to Child Welfare Services while the other two, an 8-year-old boy and a 4-year-old boy, were released to the custody of their mother.

Amon-Wilkins said police had not detected any injuries on the man’s biological children.

“We’re still piecing everything together,” he said. “And we’re still considering charges of potential charges against the mother, as well as additional charges against Mr. Saragosa.”

He went on to say that people should not look the other way when they see possible signs of abuse.

“It is your business,” Amon-Wilkins added. “It’s all of our business to, you know, help protect, you know, children in the community, even if they’re not our children.”

Bail was set for Saragosa at $85,000.

Here’s a local news report about the incident:

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