A DAD who locked his adopted son in a six-foot box for 18 hours a day and forced him to use a bucket as a toilet faces sentencing on Thursday after turning down a plea deal.
In February 2022, Tim and his wife Tracy were arrested for locking their son in the tiny room of their Jupiter home for up to 18 hours a day.
The boy wasn’t allowed to have any control over the lights or air conditioning and had to use the bathroom in a bucket in the cramped space, prosecutors said.
He refused to take the stand, and stood silently while his adopted son, now 16, declared to the court that the punishment was “dehumanizing” and “like genocide.”
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“The bed had no frame and no box spring. It was just a mattress on the floor,” the boy told the jury while testifying at trial.
Ferriter documented the abuse with a Ring camera that he set up inside the room, and chose to give some of the recordings to the court.
The camera captured shouting matches where the dad was heard screaming about his son’s decisions and giving heartless warnings that if he doesn’t eat his food there will be rats in his room.
The defense admitted that the father’s behavior was regrettable, but maintained that he wanted the best for his son and never meant to hurt him.
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The son said his bad behavior included hacking school computers, stealing, and trying to give his four-year-old brother beer.
He shockingly asked the court to forgive his adoptive parents, and felt they wished him no harm.
But the teen, known as RF to protect his identity, was defended by his sister, who told prosecutors that she witnessed abuse firsthand.
In a video played for the court, she was heard confirming most of the abuse that RF described and admitted that she feared Ferriter would kill her brother.
Weeks before the trial, Ferriter was offered a plea deal that would’ve seen him sent to prison for just two years before being let out on probation.
The deal was contingent on his wife Tracy also pleading guilty.
His team rejected the deal and continued to fight for his innocence while he sat completely stoic and unflinching in the courtroom.
Ferriter’s only visible reaction was violent shaking during a hearing where he asked to be released from jail before sentencing.
A judge will sentence him on Thursday to anywhere from 75 months to 42 years in prison for his crimes.
CHILD REPORTED MISSING
The couple first came under investigation in January 2022 when they reported their adopted son missing.
They told officials at the time that he was known to run away as he suffered from “several behavior disorders,” police said.
But when detectives knocked on their doors to look for more evidence, they were refused entry, arresting documents revealed.
Tracy initially said they were not allowed into the home without her husband being present as it made her uncomfortable.
Eventually, one person was allowed inside and stumbled across the room of horrors lying in the garage.
According to police, Tracy told them it was mainly used for storage, and that sometimes the children would hang out in the room, police said in arresting documents.
A contractor who had built the tiny room for the family told investigators that what they asked for was “odd.”
He said that the door had a deadbolt lock and knob on the outside, so once inside the office the space, the boy wasn’t able to exit unless someone opened the door.
Three days after he was reported missing, on January 31, the young teen was found after he was captured on a middle school security camera.
He told police that he was being abused by his father, who allegedly slammed him into a wall by his neck and hit him in the face.
The boy said that he was regularly given only leftovers in his room after the rest of the family ate and that he ran away because he felt that “no one loves me.”
According to an arrest warrant, the child said he spent up to 18 hours a day locked in the room.
After obtaining a search warrant, police were given recordings of the sick abuse.
They reported hearing the locking sound of a deadbolt after the door was closed to the room.
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Ferriter has been found guilty of aggravated child abuse, false imprisonment, and child neglect.
His wife Tracy faces similar charges, but the start date for her trial has not been set.
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