Six people accused of pouring scalding water on 3-year-old as punishment

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

NEWARK, N.J. — A New Jersey mother and five other adults were arrested for allegedly beating a 3-year-old boy and scalding him with hot water.

The victim’s mother, Natacha Smith, 43, faces charges of aggravated assault and endangering the welfare of a child.

The others who lived with Smith in a shared house in Newark were arrested on the same charges.

The Essex County Prosecutor's Office identified them as Patricia Gamarra, 62; Mary Buchan, 55; Patricia Buchan, 28; Bridget Buchan, 23; and Homey Searcy, also known as Omar Searcy, 39.

Starting in July, the six adults are accused of abusing the boy in a "systematic and coordinated beating" using a belt and fists, prosecutors said Wednesday. They also allegedly burned him with hot water as a form of punishment.

Related: Woman arrested after pouring hot grease on victim during argument, police say 

The child is now in protective custody after undergoing treatment at an area hospital, according to The Star-Ledger.

Authorities learned of the alleged abuse after workers at a Newark preschool contacted them, according to the paper.

They were scheduled to make a court appearance Thursday.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.