A 5-year-old boy from Provo, Utah, who was allegedly locked in a basement by his parents and forced to eat carrots had an “orangey” tint to his skin when he was examined by doctors, according to a newly unsealed search warrant.
Clarissa Anne Tobiasson, 27, and Brett Parker Tobiasson, 31, were charged Aug. 9 in 4th District Court with child abuse, a second-degree felony, according to television station KSL in Salt Lake City.
The couple is accused of “disciplining” their adopted son by locking him in a basement room for many hours each day, often with no light, and requiring him to eat a certain amount of carrots each day, according to charging documents obtained by the station.
A recently unsealed search warrant in 4th District Court went into more detail about the diet the Tobiassons allegedly forced upon the boy.
“The child was required to eat a bowl or baggy of carrots and would not be given anything else to eat or drink until the carrots were gone. If the carrots were not eaten they would be saved for the next meal and then the next meal and sometimes the next day. One night the family had ordered pizza and the child was only allowed to have carrots, and then told once all the carrots were gone he could have pizza,” the warrant stated.
It continued: ” Later the child was given a short time to finish the carrots and was then told he did not eat them in time therefore he could not have pizza. He was told by his father he would give him pizza in the morning, however while being locked in the room he had an accident in his pants and was told because of the accident he could no longer have the pizza.”
After the Tobiassons were arrested, the boy was examined at a doctor’s office. There, “a nurse reported the child to have an ‘orangey’ tint to his skin. The witness reported finding the skin color was because the child was only allowed to eat carrots for every meal,” according to the warrant.
The warrant also noted the basement had no windows, “and the child reported he kept running into the walls while he was locked in the room because it was dark. The child said he was scared to be in the room. The child reported seeing a mouse and spiders in the room and mouse feces on the floor.”
The Tobiassons are expected back in court next month, according to KSL.