LOGAN, Utah -- A father from Logan was arrested on Tuesday for allegedly chaining his 6-year-old son to a bed.
“It came to us through an anonymous phone call,” said Logan Police Chief Gary Jensen.
Sammie Hodges, 28, was booked into the Cache County Jail on four counts of child abuse after authorities discovered his son around 11 a.m.
“The chain seemed to be more of an overstatement,” Jensen said. “I would describe it more as a two style chain, or even perhaps a logging chain, a very substantial metal chain that was padlocked to the bed frame and padlocked to his ankle."
According to Jensen, the child was left with some snacks and water, and the chain was long enough to allow the boy some mobility.
“I don't know the exact length, but long enough to make it from his 12x12 bedroom across the hall to the bathroom,” Jensen said. “The young boy suggested it felt like a dog bite or something pinching him.”
Authorities believe Hodges lived in his home at 825 N. 1400 East with a girlfriend. Attempts by FOX 13 to contact anyone at the property were unsuccessful.
Despite what police found inside the house, there was never any sign of trouble to anyone outside of the family.
“They seemed healthy and happy. Sometimes we'd be out here working on the garden and doing our stuff, and they'd just come and ask us what we were doing,” said neighbor, Ike Buckley.
Just a few houses down from Hodges,’ parents whose children played with the 6-year-old described him as active and happy.
"It breaks my heart. It really does. It's really hard to understand why anybody would do such a thing, and that it was happening and we never saw any signs or knew that it was happening, is really hard,” said neighbor, Maura Blair.
The child was in good physical condition, according to police. He is currently in the custody of the Division of Child and Family Services. Police have not yet been able to contact his mother, who may live out of state.
“That's a shock to see that kind of treatment to a child, especially a 6-year-old child,” Jensen said. “We have services in Logan that are ready and willing and very capable of assisting parents in difficult situations such as this.”
The Child and Family Support Center of Logan is located about 10 minutes from the family’s home and offers 24-hour assistance to parents and children under the age of 11.
If a family is in need of immediate help, the center will care for the child throughout the day at no charge. Staff members are also able to work with parents on a regular basis to ensure the child has proper care.
“I would suggest there really is no excuse for this,” Jensen said.