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Racine police say a father with an open case of child abuse in Minnesota is facing the same charges here for beating his two sons.

The man—who is not being named to protect the identity of his children—was charged Thursday in Racine County Circuit Court with two felony counts of physical abuse of a child-intentionally causing bodily harm. If convicted, he faces up to 12 years in prison and/or up to $20,000 in fines.

According to the criminal complaint, a teacher at a local elementary school noticed marks on a 10-year-old boy’s face that include a scrape and swelling. When the teacher asked the boy about the marks, he said he didn’t know but later admitted he was afraid to tell anyone because he didn’t want his dad going to jail.

Alleged ongoing abuse

Police say the boy and his 6-year-old brother were outside playing before the school bus picked them up while their parents were sleeping. The boy told officers their parents don’t allow them to play outside before school, and when their father discovered them, he grabbed the older boy by his shirt and restricted his breathing to the point the boy thought he might pass out. The man also slapped the boy multiple times across the face.

The older boy wasn’t sure if his father hit his younger brother, the complaint continues. The younger boy said he thought his older brother passed out because he had to yell his name and pull on his ear before the older boy would respond to him. Both boys told police they get hit almost daily with a belt and that they’ve been punched in the stomach.

Police say the boys’ reported that their mother did nothing to intervene on their behalf during the incident. Both parents have open child abuse cases in Minnesota.

The man remains in the Racine County Jail on a $5,000 cash bond and will next be in court April 20 for his preliminary hearing.

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