Deputies: Idaho mom beat children, shaved their heads for eating ice cream

NAMPA -- A Canyon County woman is facing charges after police say she severely beat her four children earlier this year as punishment for eating a tub of ice cream.

According to court documents, 26-year-old Priscilla Zapata told relatives that she "lost it" after discovering her children - two boys and two girls - had eaten the ice cream on the evening of July 18.

Deputies say Zapata beat all four of her children with a belt, causing extensive bruising.

According to court documents, one of the girls told investigators that her mother had hit her “everywhere,” then thrown her outside. The girl also told relatives that Zapata had bitten her, shoved her face into the ice cream and pushed her into a wall.

The suspect's other daughter also said Zapata had grabbed her by the throat and held her against the wall, lifting her up onto her toes and leaving her struggling to breathe.

The girl told deputies she “felt like [she] was going to die,” and “like [she] was already dead,” and thought that her mother was intentionally trying to kill her, according to court documents.

Zapata is also accused of shaving both girls' heads as punishment. One of the children said she did not say anything as her head was being shaved, because she was afraid her mother would cut her.

All four children were placed into the custody of the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare. A warrant was issued for Zapata's arrest Oct. 5, and she was booked into the Canyon County Jail Tuesday.

Zapata is charged with four felony counts of injury to a child. She is due back in court Nov. 8 for a preliminary hearing.

If convicted, Zapata could face up to 10 years in prison for each count. 

© 2017 KTVB-TV


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