A Florida waitress is being hailed as a hero after her quick thinking saved a boy from an abusive home.
Flavaine Carvalho was working at Mr. Potato restaurant in Orlando on New Year’s day when she noticed odd behavior from one of the families she was serving.
According to Carvalho, the whole family ordered food except for a young boy. When she asked if there was an issue with the food that was preventing the boy from ordering, she was told that the boy was going to eat at home later.
Despite this answer, something still didn’t sit right with Carvalho. Upon closer inspection of the boy, she noticed that he had several bruises and scratches on his face and arms.
“A couple of minutes later I wrote a sign asking him if he needs help and this is when he nodded yes and make a movement with his hands like he didn’t know what to do. That’s when I called 9-1-1 and a couple of minutes later the police came and took over the situation in an amazing way.” Said Carvalho. She held the sign up behind the boy’s parents so that they were unable to see it.
Police responded to the scene and interviewed the boy. He alleged that he had been abused at the hands of his step-father, who had tied him up, hung him from a door, hit him with a broom, and handcuffed him. He also alleged he was denied food as punishment.
Doctors found several bruises on the boy and said that he was twenty pounds underweight.
The 11-year-old boy was removed from the home, as well as another child who’s four-years-old.
Police arrested the stepfather, Timothy Wilson II, and charged him with three counts of aggravated child abuse and child neglect. The boy’s mother, Kristen Swann, was charged with two counts of child neglect.
“What this child had gone through, it was torture.” Said Erin Lawler of the Orlando Police Department. “If Ms. Carvalho would not have said something when she saw it, that little boy would probably not be with us, much longer.