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Man accused of tying 5-year-old brother to coffee table with dog leash

Justin Curtis Cole was arraigned Saturday on one felony count of child abuse

February 15, 2011

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — A 21-year-old man accused of abusing his 5-year-old brother allegedly tied the boy to a coffee table with a dog leash after being physically aggressive with him over the weekend, according to Berkeley County Magistrate Court records.

Justin Curtis Cole, of 153 Wildflower Creek Drive in Martinsburg, was arraigned Saturday by Magistrate Jim Humphrey on one felony count of child abuse and a misdemeanor count of providing false information to a West Virginia State Police trooper, according to court records.

The boy has Down syndrome and his mother has multiple sclerosis, and Cole was assisting with the care of both of them when the altercation occurred Friday night, according to court records.

Cole became upset at his younger brother because he was throwing things on the floor, according to court records.

He began aggressively spanking his little brother, then threw him on the couch and tied him up with the leash, according to court records.

State Police Trooper P.L. North said in a complaint filed in magistrate court that Cole repeatedly lied about his age, initially claiming he was 18 years old, according to court records.

The state office of Child Protective Services was contacted and a CPS worker responded to take custody of the child, according to court records.

— Matthew Umstead

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