Deputies say Florida couple zip-tied boy to plywood
A Sarasota man is accused of using zip ties to bind a 13-year-old boy to a piece of plywood and forcing the child to sleep without a mattress or any linens.
The Sarasota County Sheriff's Office claims Frank McKay, 41, gave the boy a salad, a banana and two bottles of water a day while bound to the plywood. Deputies say the child was also bound while visiting the home of McKay's girlfriend who lives nearby.
Deputies described one incident where the child was tied up to a pole in a restaurant.
According to an arrest affidavit, the zip ties were part of a punishment for stealing food and taking money to buy food at school. The affidavit claimed McKay also disciplined the boy with "whoopings" that involved a belt and a hanger.
Another affidavit said the victim told investigators he was bound every time he is left alone in the house and "for most of the day."
"The victim stated he could not keep track of how often it was happening and stated 'every day' since July 13,'" an affidavit said.
Authorities say the boy had been sleeping on a piece of plywood on the bottom bunk of a bed without any bedding for roughly two months. According to a probable cause affidavit, the boy told authorities he has been threatened with getting his fingers chopped off.
"If I kill you, I don't have to worry about you," the boy says he was told, according to the affidavit.
A registered nurse told law enforcement officers there were abrasions on the boy's wrists because the zip ties were "too tight."
McKay is charged with false imprisonment and aggravated child abuse. His girlfriend, Adecia Johnson, 38, is charged with false imprisonment and aggravated child abuse. Both are being held without bond.
According to an arrest affidavit, Johnson said the zip ties were a form of punishment -- not abuse.
"McKay has more than a dozen prior arrests in Sarasota County for crimes including contempt of court for non payment [of] child support, burglary, possession of cocaine, and more," the Sarasota County Sheriff's Office said.