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Fla. man threatened to feed boy to alligators, deputies say

Dereck Dunn arrested in Flagler County

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PALM COAST, Fla. – A 28-year-old Central Florida man faces a child abuse charge after deputies say he beat an 8-year-old boy and threatened to feed him to alligators.

A Flagler County Sheriff's Office report said that the child told deputies Dereck Dunn took him to a pond behind their home on Tuesday and made the threat. They returned to the house and the boy said Dunn pushed his face into the carpet until he couldn't breathe and hit him several times with a belt, according to deputies.

Dunn told deputies he was only joking when he threatened the boy and he denied hitting him, officials said.

The relationship between Dunn and the boy wasn't explained.

Dunn posted a $7,500 bond on Thursday. Records didn't list an attorney for Dunn.