ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. – A mother faces a first-degree felony charge of child abuse after St. Johns County deputies said she burned a 6-year-old child with a cigarette lighter.
Emina Dizdarevic, 36, was booked early Wednesday morning into the St. Johns County jail on a charge of cruelty toward a child.
According to an arrest report, the woman may have been experiencing mental episodes. Deputies said she was asking the 6-year-old girl "strange questions" and became angry after asking the child, "What's my name?" Deputies said she also asked the girl, "Do you know I'm Jesus?" and "What if I was a witch?"
The woman then burned the child on the upper left arm with an open flame from a cigarette lighter in the bathroom of a home, according to the report. The report noted that it left a small blistered mark and the Department of Children and Families was notified.
A neighbor, who wished to remain anonymous, told News4Jax that the incident happened while Dizdarevic was home with her four daughters and one the girls ran to her house for help.
"One of the daughters came here and we contacted her father and he was here immediately and called 911," the neighbor said. “It was very upsetting. It was late at night and I just felt horrible for them."
The report stated Dizdarevic denied burning the child and offered no explanation as to how the injury could have occurred. She was then arrested and taken to jail.
At a first appearance hearing later that morning, a judge ordered Dizdarevic to have no contact with her daughter and said the only way she would be allowed to go back to her home would be with a deputy escort. The judge also ordered a mental evaluation for Dizdarevic.
As of Wednesday evening, Dizdarevic remained in jail on $2,500 bond, online jail records show.