Contact: Ken Daley, Public Information
District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro’s office announced Friday (March 29) it secured guilty pleas and an eight-year prison sentence for a New Orleans man who forced a 4-year-old boy to incur severe burns in scalding-hot bathtub water last April.
Marcel Davis Jr., 26, pleaded guilty as charged on March 22 to second-degree cruelty to a juvenile and to domestic abuse battery involving burning. As part of a plea agreement approved by the victim’s family, Criminal District Judge Robin Pittman imposed sentences of eight years and six years, respectively, and ordered the sentences to be served concurrently. State prosecutors agreed to have Davis sentenced as a multiple felony offender only on the domestic abuse count.
Davis admitted abusing his girlfriend’s son after the boy had urinated on himself on the morning of April 26, 2018. After the boy’s mother left for work, Davis partially filled a bathtub with water heated to 130 degrees and forced the child to stand and sit in it. The child continued being subjected to the scalding water while Davis stepped out of the
house for a phone call.
The young boy incurred second- and third-degree burns over 18 percent of his body.
Despite blistered and sloughing skin on his feet, ankles, back, buttocks and genitals, the boy was not taken for hospital treatment for four days. The victim’s mother told authorities that Davis had threatened to kill her if she took the child to a doctor and took away her phone at one point.
The victim’s mother and siblings told investigators Davis had physically abused them previously in their relationship. During his medical examination, the 4-year-old victim was asked why he hadn’t gotten out of the scalding water.
“I thought I would get in trouble,” the boy replied.
Assistant District Attorney Michael Danon prosecuted the case.
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