Boy who couldn’t sit down at school
sparks abuse investigation
LAS CRUCES, NM – Authorities arrested a Las Cruces man suspected of spanking his young stepson multiple times and hard enough to leave visible bruising on the boy’s buttocks.
Joshua Salais, 23, is charged with one count of child abuse. The charge is a third-degree felony count.
Investigators learned that on Oct. 22, 2018, a 7-year-old boy was at his elementary school and had difficulty sitting down, according to the Las Cruces Police Department.
The young boy went to the school’s nurse, where it was discovered he had black and purple bruising on his buttocks.
The boy indicated to authorities that he was injured by Salais, who had spanked him.
The boy also indicated that his mother had to intervene to stop Salais.
Las Cruces police detectives believe that Salais used a belt on the young boy’s bare skin 8 to 10 times over the last two weeks.
Investigators subsequently observed bruising, in different stages of healing, that were consistent with allegations of the boy being struck hard, multiple times over several days.
Custody of the young boy has since been turned over to his grandmother.
A warrant was issued for the arrest of Salais. He was taken into custody Friday evening and booked into the Doña Ana County Detention Center where he was initially held without bond.