DETROIT - The father of a Detroit boy whose disappearance made national headlines after he was found in the family's basement after an 11-day search by federal and local investigators has pleaded guilty to a fourth-degree child abuse charge.
Charles Bothuell IV told the court Tuesday at a hearing that he hit his then 12-year-old son, Charles Bothuell V, with a PVC pipe. He pleaded guilty to the charge in exchange for the dismissal of a second-degree child abuse charge. The prosecution agreed the father's sentencing will be 18 months probation, no contact with his son and anger management classes.
Young Charlie was reported missing by his parents on June 14, 2014. More than a week later, the FBI, state and local police found him in the family's home on Nicolet Place isolated behind some boxes in the basement.
During an interview with Nancy Grace, the father was told on live TV that his son had been found in his own basement. Charles Bothuell IV appeared shocked and maintained he had no idea where his son had been.
He and Charlie's stepmother, Monique Dillard-Bothuell, each were initially charged with second-degree child abuse and torture, but the torture charge was later dropped. Dillard-Bothuell's case was dismissed.
Charlie testified that he was kept home from school and forced to do rigorous exercise routines by his parents. He also testified that his father hit him with a PVC pipe.
Stay with Local 4 News and ClickOnDetroit.com for updates to this developing story.
In an interview earlier this month with Local 4's Shawn Ley, Charles Bothuell maintained his innocence.
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