Police: Father tried to beat demons out of boy

April 6, 2009 10:43:51 AM PDT
A father is behind bars, accused of severely beating his three-year-old son at their west Harris County home Saturday night. Investigators say the man claimed he was trying to beat the demons out of the little boy. [SIGN UP: Get headlines and breaking news sent to you]

Deputies say when they arrived at the home near Lone Dove and Clayton Bend, they could hear a child screaming.

Fears of demons inside the family home started with a statue, according to neighbors, and ended with the brutal beating of the boy.

Police say Jacky Tran, 35, told police he was trying to 'beat the demons' out of his son, Bill.

"I saw Bill. They picked up Bill and he was bleeding," said neighbor Abdul Badat. "The little boy, he was bleeding."

Suffering from serious head injuries, paramedics rushed the toddler to Memorial Hermann Hospital. Meanwhile, neighbors tried to make sense of the trouble that started three days earlier.

"Everything started on Wednesday when he got some kind of statue. He brought it home," said Badat. "Immediately, he found it had some kind of demon inside."

But neighbors say Tran buried the statue at a nearby Buddhist temple and received instructions on how to rid his house of ghosts. On Friday, neighbors notice the strange behavior continuing when Tran began throwing all of his furnishings out of his home through a second story window.

"I asked him what happened and he told me, 'No, everything's OK'," said neighbor Carlos Oliveari.

Still, Tran's friends who describe him as extremely helpful and kind say once the furniture was out of the house, he seemed to return to normal. That is, until early Saturday evening.

Police were called when something inside the home tripped off the burglar alarm. Officers were disturbed by what they saw going on inside the upstairs bedroom.

"I saw something like hitting, but with the music, I couldn't recognize it," said Badat.

Officers say when they arrested Tran, everyone realized a little boy is what he was hitting. It's a horrifying ending that leaves a close-knit community stunned.

Tran faces felony charges of bodily injury to a child. The child is recovering and said to be in good condition.

The child's mother was at home at the time of the incident. Police say when she saw the injuries to her child, she fainted.

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