Man charged with child abuse after allegedly slapping child across the face

Man charged with child abuse after allegedly slapping child across the face
David Kimo Rufino Jr. (Source: Sarasota County Sheriff's Office)

VENICE, Fla. (WWSB) - A Venice man previously arrested for child neglect is facing new charges, this time for child abuse.

Venice Police were called to a home around 10pm Sunday after a caller reported 26-year-old David Kimo Rufino Jr. had slapped a child, leaving red marks and scratches on the child's face.

Officers arrived and spoke to the caller, who told them there was a loud smacking noise before Rufino was heard yelling at the child, "Shut the f*** up and go to bed" at the top of his lungs. When the caller confronted Rufino, he reportedly said he "could hit [the child] any day of the week" and later left the home.

Venice Police took photos of the visible injuries to the child's face and later arrested Rufino, charging him with abuse of a child without great bodily harm and battery.

Rufino was arrested earlier this year in February on charges of child neglect.

Venice Police say a woman found a child walking down the street dressed only in a shirt and diaper. The child was crying and scared and no adult was nearby.

Prosecutors ultimately did not move forward in taking Rufino to trial in that case.

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