Casper Man Accused of Felony Child Abuse
A Casper man is accused of a "completely unwarranted and unnecessary" assault against a child, after the child reportedly asked the man to move his vehicle.
Ted Ferguson, 53, was booked into jail Monday evening on one count of felony child abuse. Should prosecutors formally charge Ferguson and obtain a conviction, Ferguson could face up to 10 years in prison.
Charging papers say police responded to an address on South WIllow for a report of an assault at about 7:30 p.m. Monday. The woman who made the report said Ferguson had kicked a boy, whose age has not been released.
The alleged victim told police that Ferguson had pulled up and parked in the street, and the alleged victim's aunt asked Ferguson to park somewhere else, because roofers working on the house needed the space where Ferguson parked his vehicle.
Ferguson reportedly refused to move, so the boy approached him near the sidewalk and asked him to move. Ferguson allegedly said something to the effect of, "you're not my boss."
The alleged victim said at that point, he ran past Ferguson, then turned toward Ferguson, after which Ferguson allegedly kicked the boy in the stomach hard enough to knock the wind out of him and knock him to the ground.
A man who had been working on the roof when the alleged incident took place corroborated the boy's story, saying the alleged assault was "completely unwarranted and unnecessary," according to the police affidavit.
The boy's aunt immediately told Ferguson to leave after he allegedly kicked the boy, and Ferguson left without further incident.
The responding officer found a red mark on the boy, which was "consistent with the toe portion of a shoe, and photographed the mark for evidence.
Two police officers went to an address on North Center and spoke with Ferguson, who claimed he went to the house on Willow to visit a friend when the alleged victim immediately began yelling at him to "get you f------ car out of the road."
Ferguson also claimed the boy yelled, "I'll come down there and kick you a--." He said the boy then "charged at him like an animal," though Ferguson told police he couldn't recall all the details because everything happened so quickly.
At one point, Ferguson reportedly said, "I think he took a swing at me." He also claimed the boy was acting "very aggressive [sic]."
After charging him, Ferguson said, the boy walked away slightly and again turned to face Ferguson, so he extended his right leg to keep distance from the boy. Ferguson claimed the boy must have run into his leg as he was holding it up.
When police asked Ferguson about the shoes he was wearing during the incident, Ferguson allegedly said he had thrown the shoes away. He later showed officers a pair of worn black tennis shoes in a dumpster in the alley behind his trailer.
The shoes were logged and photographed as evidence. Ferguson was arrested, though no booking photo was available Tuesday morning.
Ferguson will likely make his initial appearance in Natrona County Circuit Court at 2 p.m. Tuesday.