PD: Father Carved Pentagram On 6-Year-Old Son’s Back

Richland Hills police are charging Brent Troy Bartel with Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon for allegedly carving a pentagram on the back of his 6-year-old son. (credit: Richland Hills Police Dept.)

RICHLAND HILLS (CBSDFW.COM) – A North Texas father is in police custody, accused of carving a pentagram symbol on the back of his 6-year-old son.

Richland Hills police officers were sent to a house in the 3700 block of Ruth Road after a man called 911 and told the dispatcher, “I shed some blood.” The caller, later identified as Brent Troy Bartel, went on to tell the dispatcher, “I inscribed a pentagram on my son.”


Police soon received another 911 call. The child’s mother had run to a neighbor’s house and during the emergency call can be heard in the background saying that her husband hurt her son.

Richland Hills police Sgt. Nathan Stringer told KRLD NewsRadio 1080, “The mother had run next door [and] had called 911 as well. So, it was just the suspect and the child in the house.”

When police go to the house they found the boy inside the house, wearing pajama bottoms and no shirt. There was a large pentagram carved into his back. Officers said the five-pointed star covered the majority of the boy’s back.

During the 911 call allegedly made by Brent Bartel the dispatcher asked the caller why he had cut the child. The man responded, “It’s a holy day.” Officers at the scene also reported that they found something out of the ordinary. “One odd point…is the man took some of his son’s blood and had smeared it on the door frame; on his front door,” Sgt. Stringer said.


Police say the little boy was cold and shivering, so officers wrapped him in a jacket and called paramedics. The child was taken to Cooks Children’s Hospital. “He’s in stable condition,” Sgt. Stringer explained, “but the pentagram encompassed the majority of his back, so there was quite a bit of blood.”

Officers, continuing their investigation at the home, found a box cutter. They believe it is the weapon used to cut the child.

Police said they had been called to the home several times before, but that all those incidents were for verbal domestic incidents between the husband and wife. “nothing ever with the child,” Stringer said.

One of the Bartel’s neighbors, Joyce Pierce, told CBS 11 about one incident when police were called to the home.  “They did have a disagreement one night and he come over and used my phone. Then police came and took care of it.”

The child is expected to recover. Police said while there were a lot of cuts made on the boy the wounds weren’t very deep. The child and his mother returned home several hours after the incident.

Bartel will be charged with Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon, an enhanced crime because it was committed against a family member. He remains in the North Richland Hills Quad-Cities Jail on a $500,000 bond.  Texas Child Protective Services (CPS) was notified.

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