Judge: 5 starved, tortured kids to stay in state custody

Kids life described as 'a living hell'

Author: Paul Venema, Reporter, pvenema@ksat.com
Published On: Nov 09 2012 04:14:41 PM CST   Updated On: Nov 09 2012 04:47:30 PM CST

Five children taken into custody last month will remain in temporary state custody until at least Dec. 13.

That was the ruling made Friday by Judge Charles Montemayor following several hours of testimony on the condition of the children.

Three of the children were in the foster care of Iliana Archuleta, 40, and her 42-year-old husband Tim Archuleta.

Two others were the couple’s biological children.

The couple, along with their nephew, Rogelio Archuleta, 40, were arrested on Oct. 13 and charged with injury to a child.

During Friday’s hearing, Dr. Shayla Nienow said the three foster children were malnourished when she examined after they were removed from the couple’s home.

“They were extraordinarily thin and you could see the bones in their chest,” She testified. “Their collarbones and should blades were also protruding.”

Child Protective Services Investigator Charles Paul said the three told him they were beaten regularly and food was withheld as a form of punishment.

“One of the children was made to bite the finger tip from a sibling’s finger as part of their punishment for obtaining food they were accused of stealing," Paul said.

Another form of punishment was being ordered to lay in a bathtub filled with ice water.