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Published: Thursday, 4/7/2005

Van Wert County man, woman arraigned in child abuse

VAN WERT - Two Van Wert County residents were arraigned yesterday after their indictment last week by a grand jury in the beating of a 13-year-old child with a board and allegedly making her drink dish soap.

William J. Collins, 32, of Convoy, and Lorraine German, 30, of Ohio City, were charged with endangering children, a second-degree felony.

Mr. Collins was also indicted on a charge of permitting child abuse, a third-degree felony.

Both pleaded not guilty to the indictments.

The child has been placed in foster care.

After the Children's Services division of Van Wert County Jobs and Family Services received a report of abuse, the sheriff's office and children's services did a joint investigation of the case.

The agencies said that the two beat a daughter of Mr. Collins with a board and kicked her with steel-toed boots, causing severe bruising.

Authorities also said the couple made the child drink dish soap.

The alleged abuse took place between October and March 15.

Mr. Collins and Ms. German are held on cash and unsecured personal surety bonds.

If either is released, contact with the victim is prohibited.

Eva Yarger, Van Wert County assistant prosecutor, said yesterday she did not believe either defendant has a record or other children.

She declined further comment because the case is still active.

The pair will likely have their pretrial hearing next week, she added.

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