Pittsburg County Courthouse

Pittsburg County Courthouse

Two McAlester residents were charged with torturing a child after police said she "lost a tremendous amount of weight" and had a shaved head.

Ashley Dawn Marie Schardeni, 24, and Billy James Menees, 27, both of McAlester, were each charged Tuesday with several counts related to the alleged child abuse, according to documents filed Tuesday at the Pittsburg County Courthouse.

Schardeni and Menees were charged together with child abuse by torture, kidnapping, and four counts of child abuse, according to court documents.

Individually, Schardeni was charged with three counts of child abuse and one count of enabling child abuse. Menees was charged with three counts of enabling child abuse and one count of child abuse, according to documents filed.

According to the child abuse by torture charge, the pair are accused of torturing a 10-year-old girl “by excessively punishing with emotional and verbal abuse, physical abuse, including spanking, tying her hands and feet for long periods of time, shaving her head, not allowing her to use the restroom, forcing her to sleep on a concrete floor with no pillow, no blanket and intentionally keeping it cold in the room, restricting her diet to oatmeal, spinach and water, and/or forcing her to stand up for painfully long periods of time during the day sometimes in wet clothing under a cold fan.”

The other charges list alleged instances of striking the girl with a large wooden paddle, wooden spoon, a sock stuffed with a bar of soap, a belt, and smashing the child’s head into a wall, documents state.

Pittsburg County Sheriff Chris Morris said the pair have made arraignments with the District 18 District Attorney’s Office to turn themselves in at the Pittsburg County Courthouse at 3 p.m.

This is a developing story and will be updated when more information is received.

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