ORLANDO, Florida. – The stepfather of an 11-year-old boy who was rescued by a caring Orlando restaurant manager using a note after noticing his bruises was sentenced to life in prison on Friday.
In June, a six-person jury convicted Timothy Wilson, 36, of 10 counts of false imprisonment, child abuse and child neglect.
Judge Wayne C. Wooten called the abuse Wilson inflicted on the boy “grade A horrific.”
“I can’t recall any instance of abuse as protracted, malicious, extensive and continuous as what was presented in this case,” Wooten said.
The now viral rescue happened at Mrs Potato restaurant on New Years Day in 2021 when Flaviane Carvalho, a waitress at the restaurant, observed that the boy’s parents had not ordered anything to eat or drink for him and isolated him from the rest of the family. She also noticed bruises on the boy’s face and arms.
She asked Wilson if there was something wrong with the food and he allegedly told her the boy would eat at home.
Carvalho then wrote “Do you need help?” on a piece of paper and showed it to the boy, keeping it out of his parents’ sight. After a few attempts the waiter indicated he needed help and the waitress contacted the police.
Through the investigation, authorities found that the boy had been “tortured, maliciously punished, and deprived of food and water for days,” the state’s attorney’s office said in a news release. He was kept in a storage room away from his mother and brother, forced to do military-style drills, hung upside down by his neck and feet from a door.
The boy’s mother, Kristen Swann, was also arrested and charged with child neglect, aggravated child abuse and failing to report child abuse. She will be sentenced on September 16.