Man Seeks Pardon for South Florida Parents Convicted of Abusing Him

Parents given heavy sentences in horrific abuse get unlikely ally

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    A man whose parents were convicted more than a decade ago in an abuse case that shocked South Florida says he's forgiven them and is hoping they'll receive a complete pardon. Ricardo Davila says the scars have healed from the horrendous abuse he suffered at the hands of his parents. (Published Wednesday, Feb 27, 2013)

    A man whose parents were convicted more than a decade ago in an abuse case that shocked South Florida says he's forgiven them and is hoping they'll receive a complete pardon.

    Ricardo Davila says the scars have healed from the horrendous abuse he suffered at the hands of his father, also named Ricardo, and his mother, Josefa, at the family's Sweetwater home.

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    The 24-year-old, who now lives with his grandmother in Nicaragua, spoke with a reporter from NBC 6 sister station Telemundo 51.

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    "Let there be no doubt that I've forgiven them," Davila said in Spanish. 

    Police say a 12-year-old Davila lived under sheer torture, locked in a bathroom and badly beaten by his parents before the crimes were discovered in 2000.

    "He had a medical condition where he would vomit every once in awhile, so when he vomited, the parents would grab him by the hair and make him eat the vomit from the floor," former Sweetwater Police Chief Jesse Menocal said in 2000.

    Police said Davila freed himself from the bathroom and ran to a neighbor for help.

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    The Davilas were convicted on charges of aggravated child abuse and child neglect, and are expected to spend their lives behind bars. Ricardo Davila was sentenced to three consecutive life sentences plus 40 more years, while Josefa was sentenced to 89 years in prison.

    Despite the abuse, Davila says he will soon travel to the United States to ask Florida Gov. Rick Scott to pardon his parents.

    "It's a message I also want to send to Florida's Governor, to let him know what happened is in the past," he said. "What I hope to do with this trip, and with the help of some Nicaraguan agencies, is to obtain a pardon for my parents."

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