MANNINGTON, W.Va. – A Mannington couple has been arrested on child abuse charges after police said an investigation determined they physically abused six children in their custody and forced them to do physical activities as punishment.
On Sunday, October 20, Bashtlee Efaw, 38, and Richard Efaw, 45, both of Mannington, were arrested on warrants obtained by Mannington Police Chief Brian Stewart on charges of child abuse resulting in injury, according to a press release issued by Mannington Police.
The release stated that Bashtlee and Richard Efaw are the parents, guardians or custodians of six children in their home on Buffalo Street in Mannington. The children living at the Efaw’s home range in ages from 5 to 15 years of age, according to the release.
Police said multiple disclosures of abuse were made by the children, in which they described being abused by Bashtlee and Richard Efaw over an extended period of time. The abuse consisted of the children being whipped with belts on the buttocks, arms and head causing scars, according to police.
Officers said a piece of metal conduit with wiring inside was used for whipping a child. The release also stated that the children were struck in the mouths with the back of the adults’ hands, which caused one child to bleed.
Additionally, police said the children were forced to do excessive amounts of push-ups and squats as punishment. A set of squats consisted of 100 squats, and at times, the children were forced to do as many as 500 squats, according to the release. Police said the children stated they had pain in their knees as a result of this particular punishment.
Officers also said the children were punished by being forced to stand with their noses touching a wall while their hands were behind their backs. The release stated that the children disclosed to police that they were forced to endure this punishment for entire days at a time. Sometimes this punishment was started when they arrived home from school around 3 p.m. and would last until they went to bed at 9 p.m. The children also told police that this punishment would often continue into the next day or days, according to the release.
Bashtlee and Richard Efaw are being held at North Central Regional jail. Both have had their bail set at $50,012 each.