A 35-year-old Fenton Township man, John Raphael Shorez, has been
arraigned on a 15-year felony count of first-degree child abuse
after an anonymous tip alerted authorities to a possible child
abuse situation on Saturday, Nov. 26.
Undersheriff Chris Swanson said the county's child protective
services received word through an anonymous tip that someone should
check on the child living at the mobile home. That information was
forwarded to the Genesee County Sheriff's Department, which then
sent a deputy to a mobile home at the Eastview Mobile Home Park, in
Fenton Township at 10:30 p.m.
Sheriff Robert Pickell said their investigation has revealed
that a 4-year-old girl, named Sharon, was running around the home
as any 4-year-old child would. During questioning, Shorez told
detectives he became angered when she continued running around
despite him telling her to stop.
While running around, Pickell said that the girl accidentally
kicked Shorez' 1-year-old son in his eye. This angered Shorez and
he grabbed the girl by her arms, causing bruises.
The sheriff said, over several hours Shorez slapped the girl and
poked her in her eyes anywhere from 20 to 40 times to show her what
it felt like to be hit in the eyes. He continued to slap her on her
head and face.
Pickell said Shorez is also accused of forcing the girl to stand
in the corner of the room for up to two hours with a hot space
heater near her feet. Detectives observed burns on the girl's feet.
The sheriff said the girl was too afraid of Shorez to move away
from the heater.
"He was abusive to her," said Pickell.
When the deputy and the Linden police officer arrived, the girl
was too afraid to talk to them. Pickell said the girl tried to tell
the officers that her injuries were from falling on her own, but
they were not convinced.
As the deputy and police officer asked the girl if she was
afraid, she shook her head yes. When they asked if she was afraid
of someone in the room, she again, shook her head up and down.
Shorez was arrested and transported to the county jail. He
remains lodged, unable to post the $10,000 cash bond.
The girl was transported to an area hospital for medical
treatment and two other children inside the home were removed.
Pickell said Shorez was dating the sister of the little girl's
mother, all of whom were at the mobile home last weekend. No other
arrests were made.
Shorez is expected back in district court on Dec. 13 for a
This case comes at the heels of another pending child abuse
case where 4-year-old Dominick Calhoun of Argentine Township was
allegedly beaten and tortured to death in 2010 by his mother's
boyfriend, Brandon Hayes. Hayes' trial is expected to be moved to
another county, however, no location has yet been determined.
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