HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – A man is facing a child neglect charge after police say he admitted to hitting a 10-year-old boy with an air hose inside an auto repair shop last month.
Ronaldo Adriano Nicolau, 41, was arrested Monday and is charged with unlawful neglect of a child or helpless person by legal custodian.
According to an Horry County Police Department incident report, police were called to Broadway Street on February 26 after receiving a report of child abuse that reportedly occurred at a business in the 1200 block of Highway 501.
The child told a DSS investigator on scene that Nicolau, who is a family member, had hit him numerous times in the past. The boy also revealed that Nicolau hit him with an air hose that morning, the report states.
Police say they were provided with photos from the investigator which reportedly showed a long bruise on the child's rib cage area and bruises "in various stages of healing" covering the child's buttocks. A safety plan was put into place, and the 10-year-old was placed with a guardian.
Nicolau was interviewed at the business where the abuse reportedly occurred. Police said there "was a moderate language barrier," but Nicolau stated the child was unruly and he could not control him. He admitted to police that he had struck the boy with the air hose, the report shows. An arrest warrant was then requested for his arrest.
Nicolau is currently being held at the J. Reuben Long Detention Center on $3,500 bond.