Indictment says father carved on son's back

Posted Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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FORT WORTH -- A Tarrant County grand jury has indicted a Richland Hills father on a charge that he carved a pentagram on the back of his young son with a box cutter.

Jurors returned the indictment last week against Brent Troy Bartel, 39, who remained in the Tarrant County Jail on Monday with bail set at $500,000.

The indictment charges Bartel with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

If convicted, he faces a maximum of 20 years in prison.

Bartel was arrested Dec. 12 at his home in the 3700 block of Ruth Road in Richland Hills after he called 911 and told a dispatcher that "I shed some innocent blood." Asked why he did it, Bartel said because "it's a holy day," according to the 911 recording.

Police found Bartel and his 6-year-old son, wearing only pajama bottoms, in the home. Police found that a large pentagram had been carved on the boy's back.

The child was taken to Cook Children's Medical Center in Fort Worth, where he was treated and released a few hours later.

Investigators also believe that Bartel got some of his son's blood and smeared the door frame of the family's home.

The boy's mother had fled to a neighbor's home and had that neighbor call 911.

Bartel's mother, Lori Ponce, told the Star-Telegram in December that her son had no history of mental illness but that he had been under tremendous stress because of marital and financial problems.

"Brent is not a demon," Ponce said. "He is loving. He loves that boy. Something happened. Don't paint him as some crazy man. No, that's not him."

This report includes material from the Star-Telegram archives.

Domingo Ramirez Jr.,


Twitter: @mingoramirezjr

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