A husband and wife are accused of flying from India to Florida to help “discipline” their son’s wife, who was found badly beaten and allegedly held against her will at a Tampa Bay area home on Saturday, law enforcement authorities said.
Jasbir Kalsi, 67, and Bhupinder Kalsi, 61, were arrested along with their son, Devbir Kalsi, 33, after the victim’s relatives in India requested a welfare check by the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, according to an incident report.
A deputy who went to the victim’s Riverview home around 6:30 a.m. on Saturday said people inside ignored his efforts to get them to open the front door. He forced his way inside when he heard Devbir’s 33-year-old wife screaming for someone to save her and her child.
“The deputy forced the door open and was immediately confronted by the victim’s husband Devbir Kalsi who attempted to push the door closed,” according to the incident report.
The deputy said he was arresting the husband when he was confronted by the man’s father and mother. As the officer dealt with the parents, additional deputies arrived.
The young wife was described as “badly beaten and bruised over her entire body.” (HuffPost is not naming her because she is a suspected victim of domestic violence.) Based on her bruises, the woman is believed to have been physically assaulted “for an extended period of time,” authorities said.
They said the child, a 1-year-old according to the Tampa Bay Times, was unharmed.
Devbir Kalsi’s parents flew to Florida from Punjab state, India, to help “counsel and discipline” his wife after hearing that she was being “disobedient,” authorities alleged. At one point, the husband and his parents allegedly threatened his wife with a knife to her throat. They also allegedly took her phone away so she couldn’t call 911.
Devbir, Jasbir and Bhupinder Kalsi were booked into the Hillsborough County Jail and held without bond, the Tampa Bay Times reported.
Devbir is facing charges of felony battery, false imprisonment, child abuse and denying access to 911.
His father is facing charges of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, false imprisonment, child abuse and denying access to 911. His mother is looking at charges of battery, domestic violence and failure to report child abuse.
The accused family members, who are foreign nationals, could be deported back to India, Fox 13 reported.
Neighbors, meanwhile, have reacted with shock to the news.
“It really is heartbreaking. There’s a brand-new baby. But who beats their wife up and has their mother and dad help him? Who does that?” a neighbor, who didn’t want to be identified, commented to Tampa station WFLA.
Another neighbor regretted that she hadn’t known what was happening.
“I’m upset that this was all going on right across the street from me and I couldn’t do anything about it and couldn’t help her,” Stephanie Payne told the station.