*The South Carolina couple accused of torturing the foster child they adopted from Uganda will pay a fine after pleading guilty to lesser charges.
We reported previously that Nicholas and Mackenzie Spencer, both 32, were living in the country doing humanitarian work when they were accused of physical and emotional abuse of their 10-year-old foster son, Kayima John. The Spencers took in three foster children from a local Christian ministry in 2018, according to People. Ugandan police said in a statement that the couple allegedly kept Kayima John “barefoot and naked throughout the day,” and would sometimes force him to “squat in an awkward position.”
Police said the Spencers made the child sleep on a bare wooden platform without a mattress or bedding. The torture allegedly occurred between 2020 and 2022.
A caretaker for the child reported the alleged abuse to police and told the local paper, The Daily Monitor, that Nicholas and Mackenzie kept the child confined to a small, tiled room. He wasn’t allowed to attend school, and a camera monitored him inside the home 24/7.
An American couple Nicholas and Mackenzie Spencer have been convicted on their own guilty plea to six counts, including child torture, neglect, unlawful stay, and unauthorized employment in Uganda. They are facing charges in the International Crimes Division of the High Court.… pic.twitter.com/7TmdZOV8hm
— NTV UGANDA (@ntvuganda) October 31, 2023
The Spencers were arrested in December 2022 and charged with aggravated torture. They were also accused of child trafficking, Reuters reported.
Nicholas and Mackenzie were facing the death penalty, but on Tuesday, they pleaded guilty to six lesser charges, including “inflicting cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment, child neglect, and unlawful stay in Uganda and employment without a work permit,” per People via Voice of America. The Spencers were ordered to pay $28,000 in compensation to the boy.
The Spencers served two months in jail following their arrest and face no additional time behind bars, People reports.
The boy has been placed in a children’s home.
The Spencers will be jailed if they don’t pay the fines.
We Publish News 24/7. Don’t Miss A Story. Click HERE to SUBSCRIBE to Our Newsletter Now!