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Killeen PD: Child left in garage as punishment; beaten for eating dog food while hungry

Ratasha La Shawn Martinez, 45, jailed on $200,000 bond, has been charged with injury to a child.
Ratasha La Shawn Martinez, 45, jailed on $200,000 bond, has been charged with injury to a child.(Bell County Sheriff's Office)
Published: Sep. 29, 2021 at 2:26 PM CDT
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KILLEEN, Texas (KWTX) - Ratasha La Shawn Martinez, 45, has been charged after she allegedly placed a girl in a garage as punishment and then assaulted that same girl after the hungry child ate dog food.

The Department of Family Protective Services alerted the Killeen Police Department’s Special Victims Unit about the alleged abuse at a Killeen resident on April 19, 2021.

On Tuesday, September 28, 2021, Martinez was booked into the Bell County Detention Center on a charge of injury to a child. Martinez was jailed on a $200,000 bond, but is no longer listed in the jail’s active roster.

An investigation revealed an 8-year-old girl was placed in the garage as a form of punishment because she touched the food of another person in the household.

Investigators learned that while the girl was in the garage, she became hungry and ate dogfood.

When Martinez learned the child ate dog food, she assaulted the girl, police said.

Reports online indicate Martinez is the victim’s mother. News 10 has not independently confirmed that information.

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