Police arrest Provo couple accused of chaining 8-year-old autistic daughter to bed

Mar 6, 2024, 12:04 PM | Updated: 5:19 pm

PROVO — Two Provo parents were arrested Tuesday afternoon, accused of chaining their daughter to a bed for several hours each night.

Emily Sorensen, 40, and Benjamin Ammon Sorensen, 45, were each arrested and booked into the Utah County Jail for investigation of abuse or neglect of a child with a disability.

Provo police said they were contacted by the Utah Division of Child and Family Services after reports of child abuse at a home.

According to the probable cause statement, an officer who arrived at the home saw the Sorensens’ 8-year-old autistic daughter on the top bunk of the bunk bed in the living room with a chain around her ankle.”

When the officer asked Benjamin Sorensen to unchain the child, he “initially rebutted but then pulled out a key from his pocket and unlocked the padlock,” the affidavit states.

An officer noted there were impressions on the child’s skin from the chain. According to the statement, Sorensen admitted to officers that he would chain the child to bed for approximately 10 hours each night and had been doing it for the last three months. Emily Sorensen, however, stated they had only been doing it for the last three weeks.

The statement goes on to say Benjamin Sorensen admitted to leaving the child unsupervised while chained adding that if he and Emily Sorensen would leave, they would leave a key with their 13-year-old daughter.

In the statement, officers said they were advised that caseworkers previously received a report of the daughter being “chained up,” but the parents “had signed agreements” to stop doing that.

Both children were taken into state protective custody.

Contributing: Pat Reavy,

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Police arrest Provo couple accused of chaining 8-year-old autistic daughter to bed