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Vernal couple charged with tying up young son and starving him

By Pat Reavy, | Posted - Oct. 23, 2023 at 4:04 p.m

VERNAL — A Vernal couple has been charged with intentionally starving their son and even tying him up to prevent him from taking food from the kitchen.

When police took the 9-year-old boy to a local hospital for treatment, he weighed just 37 pounds, according to charging documents.

James Arlan Weber, 39, was charged Monday in 8th District Court with four counts of aggravated child abuse, while his wife, Aimee Weber, 40, was charged with two counts of aggravated child abuse. All charges are second-degree felonies.

Between Oct. 1, 2022 and Oct. 19 of this year, the Webers caused "serious physical injury to a now 9-year-old child by withholding food and starving him to the point he required hospitalization," according to charging documents.

And since September, James Weber used a rope to tie up the boy on at least two occasions "to prevent him from accessing food," the charges allege, and on another occasion told an adult sibling to tie up the boy.

When the boy was questioned by representatives from the Uintah/Dagget County Children's Justice Center on Oct. 6, he described how "his hands and feet are bound and he is tied to his bed. Two nights ago, on the victim's birthday, he was last tied up. The victim wears a diaper to bed and while he was bound in his bed his urine soaked through his diaper and into the rope," a police booking affidavit states. "The victim said he is tied up so he does not get into food."

Police noted in the arrest report that the boy "appears to be very small and emaciated. The victim's knee bones are much larger than his calves and thighs. I can see all of his ribs and vertebrae.

"The victim said he has marks on his wrist from the rope. I observed a small, mostly healed scab on the victim's right wrist. It appears, based on the victim's physical condition, he is bound for long periods of time and nutrition is withheld," the affidavit continues.

When police questioned the family, one of the boy's siblings admitted that "they do tie up the victim to prevent him from getting into food and for the victim's safety," according to the affidavit. James Weber eventually admitted to tying the boy up, but claims he only did it for 20 minutes at a time and had only done it twice, police said.

Police say there were also cameras in the home, set up "so the kitchen area could be viewed. The purpose of this was to catch the victim stealing food," according to the affidavit.

The boy was taken into state protective custody and transferred to Primary Children's Hospital "due to his severe life-threatening physical state."

According to a witness who talked to police, the boy — who police say was adopted by the Webers — began living in the home in 2018 and the abuse started about a year later.

"The victim was viewed as someone who was being babysat, not a member of the house. The victim began to be disciplined through withholding food. The victim would get up late at night or in the early morning hours and go to the kitchen and take food. The victim would then not be allowed to eat breakfast or lunch. When this started it was only once a month then it went to twice a month. This eventually went to happening two to three times a week.

According to the witness food started to be withheld around October of 2022. James and Aimee would control when and who received dinner," the witness told police, the affidavit states.

Investigators believe Aimee Weber also tied up the boy at least once, her booking affidavit states.



So there is someone who witnessed this abuse for 5 years ? There is also an adult sibling who had admitted to also tieing this small child up? Let me guess, there will be no charges brought against them. They both are just as heinous and guilty as the parents!!

Instead of " witnessing " and " participating " they should have called the police 5 ( five !! ) Years ago !! And if these two parents do not get prison time then an investigation should happen and that would be to the judicial system here in Vernal !!!!!!!



Give them a taste of their own medicine! Starve them for a year and see how far they make it ! I hope you get your ass beat in jail ! Your a disg and should never be aloud around kids again !!!!!



Wow this is horrible 😢 God bless that poor child 😢 🙏 these two deserve to be charged with attempted murder



I hope that butch gets her ass beat....and your a mother....NOT....Hell is coming for you both, sick MF....

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