Wells man facing felony child abuse charges

A Wells man is accused of hitting a teen girl so forcefully that she lost consciousness.

Jason Engen, 50, was charged Monday with felony malicious punishment of a child in Faribault County Court.  He also faces three misdemeanor counts of domestic assault.

A criminal complaint says human services began an investigation in January after receiving a report of physical abuse to a child.  Engen allegedly became “agitated and aggressive” during an interview several days later with human services. Wells police were called for assistance, according to the complaint.

A teen girl told investigators that Engen was angry that she and her brother were arguing.  She said when the children continued to argue, Engen grabbed her by the forehead and struck her in the back of the head so hard she lost consciousness for roughly five seconds.

The complaint says her teen brother stepped in to help her, but Engen pushed him into the bathroom, causing him to fall into the shower.

Engen then shoved the child’s mother on the floor, causing injury to her ribs, according to the complaint.

Police say Engen admitted shoving the boy into the shower and pushing the woman to the ground.

Engen denied causing the girl to blackout according to the complaint.  He maintained that the force used was “reasonable discipline” to break up the children’s argument.  Police say Engen further admitted to headbutting the girl on a separate occasion.