Florida Woman Arrested In Severe Child Abuse Case

Florida woman Debra Galloway, 47, was arrested after two children in her care were found with burns on their body from boiling hot water.

Galloway, the legal guardian of the 1-year-old and 5-year-old, told Riviera Beach Police that the burns were a result of an accident and that both children had accidentally spilled hot water on themselves, the Sun Sentinel reports. Galloway claimed that she had been preparing potato salad for a picnic when the kids caused a pot of boiling water to fall and spill on them, according to the arrest report.

There were reportedly four children, ages 1 through 5, in Galloway's care at the time of the incident, WPTV reports. She is the grandmother of one of the children but is not related to the other three, court documents show.

Galloway claimed that she applied ice and cocoa butter to the two children’s injuries. However, after police responded to a call about possible child abuse on Saturday, they discovered fresh bruises as well as healing ones. Officers then arrested Galloway on suspicion of child abuse.

Both children were transported to the hospital where a doctor determined they had suffered second degree burns on their hands, faces, chests and legs. One of the children had bite marks and marks from rope on his wrists. Galloway said that the marks were a result of a spat between the two children and admitted to using a belt on the children’s backsides, legs and arms.

Galloway said she thought about taking the children to the hospital, but said she didn’t “feel” like it. She added that if she had taken them to the hospital, the Department of Children and Families would be notified.

Galloway has at least seven felony convictions for aggravated battery, filing a false public assistance claim, and other crimes, according to the Sun Sentinel.

Galloway currently faces two counts of aggravated child abuse and two counts of neglect causing bodily harm. She is at Palm Beach County Jail on $70,000 bail and has been ordered to have no contact with the children.

Some of the children remain in the hospital, according to WPTV.

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Sources: Sun Sentinel, WPTV

Photo Credit: WPTV


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