MESA, AZ - A Mesa couple is behind bars after their 4-year-old child was found with second degree burns on 8 percent of his body, according to authorities.
Officers were called to investigate after Child Protective Services received reports of a boy with serious burn injuries at the family's home near Power and Guadalupe roads.
When officers arrived a the home, the child's parents, Aaron Duron Roland and Joscilin Camile Smith reportedly told police the boy was not home, but was staying with a relative.
Officers continued to question the parents until they eventually led police to the victim, who was hidden in a bedroom closet.
According to the police report, the 4-year-old boy was found with second-degree burns on his back, legs and shoulder.
The parents told police the child was accidentally burned two weeks prior, after a pot of boiling water was knocked off the stove. The couple claimed they did not seek medical treatment because they feared police would suspect child abuse and take their seven children away.
The police report states while police were at the home, the 4-year-old's grandmother showed up and told police the boy had been burned after his parents had a fight.
The grandmother claimed the boy's mother threw a pot of boiling water at her husband and the water splashed on the boy. The other children living at the home were also interviewed and corroborated the grandmother's story.
According to the report, the children also claimed there had been previous incidents of physical abuse between their parents and the other kids.
While being interviewed by police, the couple reportedly admitted to the fight and the wife stated she intentionally tipped the pot of boiling water on the child.
The couple blamed each other for not seeking medical treatment for the child, but both said they feared all of their children would be taken away due to multiple encounters with CPS in other states.
Roland is facing charges of child abuse. Smith is facing charges of child abuse and aggravated assault.