INDEPENDENCE, Mo. — An Independence couple is facing charges for allegedly beating two children with a belt after they’d been caught shoplifting.
Andrew Crutcher faces two felony counts of child abuse or neglect, and Brittany Hall faces two counts of felony endangering the welfare of a child.
On July 17, police were called to a motel on U.S. 24 Highway on a report of child abuse. The witness stated that Crutcher picked up the two children that morning to discipline them after shoplifting, and they returned with several bruises on their legs.
The children, both eight years old, were taken to the hospital.
According to police, one child had bruises from the top of his left thigh to the bottom of his knee and his skin was broken and bleeding in two places. He also allegedly had 12 patterned loop marks on his body and a large amount of bruising on his upper back.
The other child allegedly had five to six patterned loop marks and bruises on his thigh from the top of his leg to his knee. One of the bruises was red, swollen and bleeding.
Crutcher was taken into custody and allegedly told detectives that he had gotten a call from Hall, who asked him to “whoop” the boys for shoplifting.
He said that he took them back to his residence on N. Seminole Drive and thought he hit the children six times each with a belt. He allegedly told detectives that he is a “big guy” and “heavy handed” and didn’t realize the extent of the injuries he had caused.
Hall was taken into custody on prior warrants and allegedly told detectives that she felt that she was at fault for telling Crutcher to “do it” and letting Crutcher “be around.”
Hall was released on her own recognizance. Crutcher remains jailed on $5,000 bond.