LOGANSPORT, Ind. — Two 12-year-old girls were arrested, with one now charged, in connection to an alleged violent assault on another girl in Logansport over the weekend.
According to the Logansport Police Department, officers received a call from dispatch on Saturday morning around 7:30 regarding a juvenile that had been ‘battered.’
“From the stuff that I’ve learned at this point during the investigation, it is very sensitive. It is what I would consider severe,” said LPD Sergeant Dan Frye. “What the juveniles have been arrested for at this point are different charges related to battery, and anything that you could look at that goes along with that.”
Frye added, “it’s very significant, very severe. It’s a little bit heart wrenching to watch the videos and to hear what has been alleged at this point.”
Family members of the victim, a 12-year-old girl, said she was invited to what she believed was a sleepover with friends Friday night.
“Over the weekend, she was tortured, beaten, confined. Two juvenile females sat on top of her for two hours so she could not breathe, they burned her with cigarette lighters. It goes on and on,” said Renita Contreras, the victim’s aunt.
Family and friends also told FOX59 the victim received cuts to her face with a sharp object and had part of her hair shaved during the overnight stay.
“They didn’t bully her. They tortured her,” said Jaimie Tribbett, the victim’s mother. “Mentally, physically tortured my daughter and it’s not right.”
Due to the sensitive nature of the allegations and the ages of those believed to be involved, including suspects and the victim, police said they are not able to confirm specific details regarding what occurred.
However, police said this case goes beyond bullying. They said officers determined enough probable cause based on their preliminary investigation to arrest the two girls allegedly involved the day they were made aware of the incident.
“My heart goes out for the young lady. We apologize to that young lady for what she is dealing with at a young age. Our investigation is ongoing. We have received emails as late as yesterday,” said Frye.
Frye said he wants to make it clear that Logansport police are taking the allegations into what happened very seriously. As he approaches his 20-year anniversary on the job, he said he’s worked many cases involving juvenile victims, but this one stands out.
“Those are not enjoyable calls for anyone in law enforcement and this one in particular goes to the extreme with the alleged suspects being juveniles as well,” said Frye. “More times than not we deal with adults victimizing juveniles and this one was a little bit different.”
“No child should be scared of another child, an adult, nobody,” said Contreras. “Grandparent, aunt, uncle, you have to watch who your kids are around 24/7. A friend may not be a friend, a family member may not be a family member. It’s scary out here that our kids are subject to this.”
According to those close to the victim and her family, the incident was allegedly videoed and shared.
“My niece in the video, looked like she was laying there dead and it wasn’t an image our family needed to see or was ever ready to see,” said Contreras.
We were able to see a short clip of the video family and friends are referring to. It shows the young girl laying down, with what appears to be a bloodied face.
“She’s a little girl. What these juvenile females did to her is unimaginable,” Contreras said.
The victim’s mother said her daughter is recovering from her physical injuries, but that she has a long road ahead in healing from this.
“It hurts bad because now she has to for the rest of her life look over her shoulder or wonder if she can trust this person or that person. It’s absolutely horrible,” said Tribbett.
While Tribbett said she wishes she could have been there to help her daughter, she won’t stop fighting for justice after what was done to her.
“I hope that my daughter can get justice and that the other little girl, I hope that she stays in there for a long time and gets the help that she needs,” said Tribbett.
“We are hoping and praying that it’s not let go. We need justice for my niece. She’s young, she’s not even a teenager yet, so this has really impacted our family. It’s impacted her,” said Contreras.
The Cass County Prosecutor’s Office confirmed that one juvenile has been charged in juvenile court in the case and was ordered detained by a circuit court judge. She faced a judge for an initial hearing on Tuesday morning.
The child is charged with the juvenile equivalents of criminal confinement resulting in serious bodily injury, a level 3 felony, intimidation with a deadly weapon, a level 5 felony, and battery resulting in serious bodily injury, also a level 5 felony.
“Officers will continue to investigate the other incidents that are alleged and we’re going to continue to investigate this one in particular. There’s still information coming in, there’s things that we’re going to do in conjunction with the prosecutor’s office, for instance, search warrants and whatnot,” said Frye. “We’re going to continue to work on that case in particular, and also another one that we continue to get emails about and things that we were able to further investigate.”
Frye asks if anyone has information on the particular incident or anything that may assist investigators, that they reach out to the Logansport Police Department.
“One of the best things that we can end up with is video. Video of an alleged incident that helps corroborate a victim’s story and there’s likely some of that stuff going to happen here,” said Frye.