Man arrested for child abuse after his mother reports him to state authorities

By Abby Morris
Star Staff
amorris@starhq.com

   A city man was arrested Tuesday and charged with child abuse and neglect after officers were informed by Children's Protective Services they had received a complaint on him.
   Timothy Craig Setzer, 36, 1003 Berry Drive, was arrested Tuesday just before noon by officers and investigators with the Elizabethton Police Department.
   According to reports, Inv. Anthony Buck, who works with the EPD Criminal Investigations Division as the child abuse and domestic violence detective, was informed by Chasity King, an investigator with Children's Protective Services, that her department had received a complaint on Setzer filed by his mother stating that Setzer had abused his 6-year-old son.
   Buck and fellow EPD Inv. Jason McCall interviewed Setzer's mother who stated to officers that she saw her son and grandson and that her grandson had sustained a black eye. "The grandmother asked her son what happened and the suspect responded 'I hit him in the eye last night,' and turned to the victim and told him 'see what you caused, get back in the car,'" the report by Buck states. The report further states that the grandmother advised detectives that her son had admitted to striking his child in the face before.
   At that time, Buck did a warrants check on the subject and found that Setzer had several outstanding warrants for his arrest out of Carter County. Buck, McCall and EPD Patrol Officer Mike Commons then obtained the warrants from the Carter County Sheriff's Department and went to Setzer's residence to serve them.
   Upon the officers' arrival, the suspect was seen outside the residence but fled back inside after McCall advised him to come talk to the officers, according to reports.
   "Detectives heard glass breakage and ran to the back of the house, where we found Mr. Setzer had broken the back bedroom window and had pulled his son through the window and attempted to run with his son," Buck states in his report. "As Mr. Setzer went through the window with his son, both received cuts. Mr. Setzer received a cut to his wrist and the victim received a cut to his right wrist."
   At that time, Setzer was arrested by Commons on the outstanding warrants charging him with assault under domestic violence, false imprisonment and second offense of violation of probation. He was also served with an order of protection and two summons for bad checks.
   Buck then interviewed Setzer's son about the bruise that was visible beneath his left eye. "(The) victim told (Buck) he and his father were at a bridge in East Side riding bikes (when he) ran over his dad's foot, his dad got mad, took him behind his Aunt Gayle's house where nobody could see them and then hit him in the face," the report by Buck states.
   When detectives went inside Setzer's residence to gather some of the child's belongings, the detectives found several knives and daggers as well as two swords in the den of the residence which were all within the child's reach. Also, the residence had no running water and pornographic pictures were hanging on the walls of the home's den area. "They were not very graphic but they were graphic enough," Buck said. "It was nude pictures of different women."
   After interviewing the victim and seeing the living conditions in the residence, Buck took out another warrant on Setzer charging him with child abuse, child neglect and evading arrest.
   According to Buck, this is the first complaint of child abuse that he knows of against Setzer, who is the custodial parent of his son.
   Setzer's son was taken to Sycamore Shoals Hospital for treatment for the minor cut he sustained to his wrist while his father was attempting to flee apprehension. While the victim was being interviewed, officers found a butterfly knife and a cigarette lighter in a fanny pack that the child was wearing.
   He was turned over to Children's Protective Services and remains in the state's custody.