TIPPECANOE COUNTY, Ind.– A Lafayette man is facing charges after allegedly beating children and chaining them to beds.
Ryan Alexander Hubertz Bass, 28, faces three counts of criminal confinement, one count of battery resulting in bodily injury to a person less than 14 years of age and three counts of neglect of a dependent.
Police said one of the victims is younger than 8 years old, another is younger than 6 and a third is younger than 3.
The investigation began on Jan. 21, 2020 when police were called to a home on Elwood Avenue in Lafayette on a report of battery. The caller said he went to a home on 18th Street and noticed bruising on a child’s head.
An officer went to that home and confirmed a child had bruising on the forehead, nose and under the eyes. The child’s mother told police she didn’t know how it happened, but knew Bass was the primary caretaker of the children in the home. When she asked him about the bruising, Bass didn’t answer, according to court documents.
Officers saw a chain and pad lock chained around a bed post in a bedroom. Upon further inspection, they found another chain and padlock, along with a loaded handgun and large knife in plain view.
Police conducted an interview with the child, who said Bass hit him or her multiple times in the face and arms with his hand. Court documents allege Bass would chain the victim up, along with two other victims. Chains would be put around the neck, causing pain.
Officers found there were four children living at the home, but the three involved in this case were not his children.
One of the victims said the children would be told to lie on the floor and not move. If they disobeyed, they would be hit with a belt, according to court documents.
A witness told police he saw Bass chain the youngest victim to a bed to “keep him from getting into things.”
When police spoke with Bass’ fiancé, she said she was aware Bass had struck the initial victim in the past, and knew the youngest victim had been chained to the bed. She said this practice started after the child ran out of the house and was nearly hit by a car. Court documents show the last time the victim ran out of the house was in the summer of 2019.
Officers then spoke with Bass, who allegedly admitted to striking the children and chaining one to a bed.
Bass was arrested on Jan. 22. As of Wednesday afternoon, it appeared Bass was no longer in jail.