HOUSTON — A woman who adopted two little girls from Nigeria said she beat or "flogged" her daughters because she only wanted what was best for them, according to investigators with the Houston Police Department.
Onyeka Lucy Asonye, 46, was charged with two counts of felony injury to a child.
According to medical records, one girl had a bruised eye, swelling to both hands, a puncture wound to the right scalp and multiple abrasions and looped healing scars on her back, abdomen, chest and legs.
The other sister had multiple abrasions and healing scars to her trunk and back.
"I wasn’t trying to abuse them. I want the best for them and myself that is the only reason I beat them," she said in a statement to police.
Asonye adopted the girls, ages 3 and 4, as infants and has been rearing them as a single mother since 2011. But police said her method of disciplining the girls was excessive, leaving bruises all over the children’s bodies.
A day care worker noticed one of the girls had a large bump on her forehead and one of her eyes was swollen shut, according to documents.
"And then that next day the baby came in with a black eye we just all cried we just fell apart," said a teacher at the La Amistad Love and Learning Academy. She didn’t want to be identified.
They knew something wasn’t right and called CPS.
The CPS case worker asked the girl who hurt her and the girl said her mom did. After seeing horrible bruises on both girls, the worker immediately took them to Texas Children’s Hospital for a full medical examination.
Elevated liver and pancreatic enzymes on blood tests indicated that both girls also suffered blunt abdominal injury. Doctors concluded the findings were consistent with abuse.
Asonye initially denied causing any injuries to the girls, but later admitted to "flogging" them with sticks.
Neighbors were surprised.
"I never hear no noise downstairs or nothing so this is a shocker to me," said Sharon Simon.
Asonye is a U.S. citizen who was born in Nigeria.
She is being held without bond.
The girls are in CPS custody.