On September 7, 1994 Cynthia Medina, 32, of Orange, California, a former playground supervisor, become angry with her 9-year old nephew when, according to the accusation she made against him, she found him playing with an ashtray full of marijuana cigarette butts.” So she punished him. Her method was to heat “two butter knives until they were red-hot and placed them on the boy's tongue.” But that was no all. She then beat the child with electric cords and a miniature wooden baseball bat. There was more. She took the bat she had battered him with and inserted it into his rectum. She did this twice. The boy was near death when police arrived to the crime scene. He had to have a colostomy bag surgically implanted to save his life.
The boy maintains that the accusation that prompted the torture was false.
Earlier incidents of abuse of Medina’s nephew were revealed by the investigation. Medina had previously “broken his teeth by dashing his face against a sink” and she had kicked him in the groin. Medina’s 9-year-old son suffered a broken finger from a beating by his mother.
After indictment she pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity, but two psychiatrists offered expert opinion that she was indeed sane.
On May 15, 1995, Medina was convicted of three crimes: torture, which carries a mandatory life sentence, felony child abuse and misdemeanor assault.
[Robert St. Estephe]
Orange County Superior Court, Santa Ana, Ca.
Sept. 7, 1994 – discovery of the crimes.
Sep. 15, 1994 – Medina turned herself in to authorities Thursday [Sep. 15] evening after the Orange County district attorney's office filed one count of torture and four counts of felony child abuse her in connection with a Sept. 7 incident.
May 15, 1995 – Medina convicted: torture, felony child abuse.
[Susan Marquez Owen & Anna Cekola, “Woman Convicted of Torturing Nephew, Faces Life Sentence,” Los Angeles Times (Ca.), May 17, 1995]
[“Bail Set At $100,000 Torture Case,” The San Bernardino County Sun (Ca.), Sep. 17, 1994, Southland Sec., p. 3]
For more cases, see: Women Who Like to Torture