A husband and wife were arrested on felony charges of torture, kidnapping, and false imprisonment, after an emaciated 17-year-old boy limped into the In-Shape Sport fitness club, cut, bruised, covered in soot, and dragging a chain locked to his ankle. The boy kept saying, “Hide me! Hide me!” and club employees called 911 while finding towels to keep the shivering boy warm.
Officers arrived and found the boy confused and scared, hardly able to remember where he was or how long he had been held prisoner. After acquiring enough information to identify the home from which he had escaped, police questioned 30-year-old Kelly Layne Lau and her husband, 34-year-old Michael Schumacher, for 45 minutes before placing them both under arrest. Their home was searched, revealing implicating evidence, and their four other children were taken into protective custody. Police say they believe the boy escaped after unlocking himself from a car seat, after picking up a dropped key.
The suspects are now being held in San Joaquin County jail on a $1.2 million bond, facing charges of torture, child endangerment, corporeal injury to a child, as well as conspiracy, kidnapping, and false imprisonment. The boy is at Sutter Tracy Community Hospital, listed in serious condition. Police intend to interview him more thoroughly when he is in better shape.
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