46ºF

Boy, 13, raped and left naked near Tidwell Park, family says

HOUSTON – Houston police are looking for a rapist after a 13-year-old boy was found naked, beat up and robbed near Tidwell Park. 

"The last thing he remembers is [his attacker] grabbing a big stick to hit him," the victim's mother said in Spanish. "He remembers perfectly who did it."

The sixth grader skipped school Monday and was hanging out near his apartment complex when he was approached by an African-American man in his 20s, his family says. 

"He tried to drink with him, smoke with him and get him to buy stuff at a store," said the boy's mother, who did not want to be identified. 

The man eventually took the boy's phone and then started beating and sexually assaulting him, according to the mother. 

"He could barely remember anything," his mother said. "He was in shock. He's just starting to remember things."

The teenager spent Monday night, Tuesday and most of Wednesday at a nearby hospital. 

"He doesn't want to talk at all. He doesn't want to look at anybody," his uncle said. "His life is destroyed."

His uncle said he got home around 5 p.m., a few hours after police arrived, and helped officers search for evidence. 

"I found the clothes and shoes right there," his uncle said, pointing to a creek in the wooded area behind Tidwell Park. "I'm surprised police didn't find them."

"I want them to catch him, I want him to pay, and I want there to be no more victims like my son," the boy's mother said. 

Houston police would only confirm that they are investigating the possible sexual assault of a juvenile.

"I want justice for my son, and I want police to do their job," the mother said. 

Knowing that her son's alleged attacker is still out there frightens his mother and park visitors like Kaleb Burch, who enjoys spending time at Tidwell Park.

"My heart stopped. That's really sad," Burch said.

Burch heard the news from a church member.

"It should have never happened to that little young boy. At the same time he should have never skipped school but at the time I feel bad for his family and I pray for his family every day," Burch said.

It's unclear if a rape kit was performed in this case. Houston Police said they always encourage a victim in these types of cases to have a trained medical professional collect any evidence.