Oct. 13, 2005 -- A Wisconsin man is facing child abuse charges for allegedly shocking his 8-year-old stepdaughter with an electric dog collar because she was eating her breakfast too slowly.
Gerald Majeres, 34, is sitting in a jail in Jackson, Wis., charged with felony child abuse, after police say he attached an electric dog collar to his stepdaughter's leg and shocked her because he and the girl's biological mother thought she was not eating her breakfast fast enough.
On Oct. 10, police told ABC News affiliate WISN-TV in Milwaukee that the girl's mother threatened to wake up Majeres if she did not eat her breakfast faster. Ultimately, she woke up Majeres, police said, and he brought out and used the electric collar.
His arrest came after an employee at the girl's elementary school noticed marks on the girl's thigh and contacted police and social services.
According to the criminal complaint against Majeres, the girl told investigators that her stepfather put the shock collar – which he normally used on the family dog – on her leg. Using a remote control, Majeres allegedly set the collar to level "4" and zapped the girl.
The girl, investigators say, told them that her stepfather said she was lucky he did not set the collar to "6," a level he uses for the dog, and that he threatened to shoot her pet rabbit while she was at school because she does not take care of it.
Mom Calls Daughter a 'Chronic Liar'
According to the complaint, the girl said the shock caused her to cry "a lot because it hurt a lot," and that Majeres threatened to continue to put the shock collar on her every morning "so that she gets done faster" with breakfast.
Police and social services officials say that when they came to the girl's home and confronted her mother, she immediately asked them if their visit was about "her chronic liar daughter." Majeres, police said, initially denied using the shock collar on his stepdaughter but then said he might have accidentally zapped her. According to the complaint, Majeres eventually told police he used the collar to "calm down" his stepdaughter.
After initially being placed in foster care, the girl is now living with a relative, investigators told WISN. The girl's mother had no comment for WISN-TV but police say she told them that her daughter is lying about the electric collar and that neither she nor her biological father want custody of her.
Majeres has been ordered not to have contact with the girl and is scheduled to make a court appearance on Oct. 17. If convicted of felony child abuse, he faces up to six years in prison.