3 Kids Under the Age of 11 Had 'Smiley Faces' Burned Onto Their Skin with a Lighter: Reports
Joshua Mize, of St. Petersburg, allegedly used a lighter to singe the skin of three children in his care
A 21-year-old Florida man faces three counts of aggravated child abuse with bodily harm after being accused of using a lighter to burn the flesh of three kids whom he was caring for, PEOPLE confirms.
The criminal affidavit in the case has been sealed, but it was previously obtained by multiple local news outlets.
TV station WTSP reports that Joshua Mize, of St. Petersburg, allegedly used the lighter to burn “smiley faces” onto the three children.
The victims are 5, 8 and 10 years old, according to the station.
Citing the affidavit, news station WFTS reports that Mize allegedly held the children down and singed them with three separate burn marks: two for the eyes, and below that — a “u” for the mouth.
PEOPLE was able to access online court records outlining the formal charges against Mize, who was initially detained Tuesday evening.
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According to the affidavit obtained by local media, investigators contend the 10-year-old was burned on his left leg slightly above the knee while the 8-year-old received burns to his back right shoulder.
The 5-year-old suffered burns to his right knee, according to WFTS, citing the affidavit.
The relationship between Mize and his alleged victims is unclear.
It is not known if he has retained a lawyer who could comment on his behalf. He is being held at the Pinellas County Jail in lieu of $450,000 bond.