A 7-year-old Massachusetts boy was abused so badly by his father that he was in a coma and unresponsive when he was admitted to a local hospital, suffering from "starving and dehydration" at just 38.5 pounds, according to police and court documents.
The boy's father, 26-year-old Randall Lints, faces a slew of child abuse charges.
In addition to the malnutrition, police said the child, abused on the second-floor of a Hardwick home, had injuries to his skin as a result of "bleach exposure."
Massachusetts State Police said they discovered the boy after responding to a 911 call on July 14. Lints allegedly told police that he went to check on his son and found him unresponsive, and that he had fallen out of bed days earlier.
First responders said they found bruises to the child's "forehead and jaw," but doctors said the injuries weren't consistent with falling out of bed. The boy also had injuries to his feet, "likely from a manufactured object," and appeared to have lost "12-15 pounds in only a few months," according to the report.
Lints was arrested about a week after his son was admitted to the hospital.
Amber Loiselle identified the victim as her son, Jack. She said she's been visiting him on her custody days in the hospital.
"He's my first born, and he's a great older brother" she said. "I just want him to open his eyes, because they're the most beautiful color of blue."
Isabella Johnson, 10, rides the bus with the child.
"He told me he scrubs the floor sometimes," Johnson said. "He says for a chore, his parents make him clean the floors."
Johnson also said he would be cold and hungry at school.
"Sometimes he comes to school, like in the winter time, he was really cold," she said. "He'd go to school on the bus and be like, 'I'm hungry,' so he'd open his lunch and eat it, and then he'd have nothing to eat at lunch."
Isabella's mom, Dawn Johnson, said through tears that she saw the little boy just recently.
"I had a yard sale a couple weeks ago and I was giving toys to him and stuff, because he doesn't have — I just let him have stuff," said Dawn Johnson.
Wednesday, a woman neighbors identified as Lints' girlfriend cried near the house. Neighbors didn't report seeing anything amiss, but one downstairs neighbor said she heard yelling a few months ago.
"I heard him yelling at his son, saying, 'Why did you do it, why did you do it?' and the child crying," she said.
Amber Loiselle said Jack is slowly getting better.
"Justice will prevail for my son, and he is going to come out of this, because he is just the most amazing little boy," she said.
The Massachusetts Department of Children and Families says the boy is in its custody. He is still recovering at a local hospital. A Facebook page set up for him says he is progressing, and that he was able to wiggle his arms and shoulders and cough on his own.