Stepdad gets life in prison after boy, 11, saved by restaurant worker's note

Stepdad gets life in prison after boy, 11, saved by restaurant worker's note

The employee showed the boy a note asking if he needed help, which led cops to discover horror abuse that the child suffered at the hands of 36-year-old Timothy Lee Wilson.

Flaviane Carvalho called 911 from a Mrs Potato restaurant in Orlando, Florida on New Year's Day in 2021.

She said that she saw Wilson and his family of four come into the restaurant at around 11 pm.

The waitress noticed that the 11-year-old boy was secluded from the family, and wasn't being given anything to eat or drink.

She also saw bruises on his body.

Carvalho wrote a secret note to the boy, asking if he needed help and held it up while she was behind his parents.

When he signaled that he did need help with a nod, she called the police.

Flaviane Carvalho noticed that the boy was being deprived of food and drink before seeing bruises on his body

“I’m super concerned and I don’t know what to do, can you give me some advice?” Carvalho said to a dispatcher at the time.

“The boy is with bruises and he’s not eating.”

She said that she could see a big scratch between his eyebrows, and a bruise on the side of his eye.

"So I felt there was something really wrong," Carvalho said.

When cops got there, they learned that Wilson was the boy's stepfather.

The state attorney's office said that the 911 call led officers to find that the boy was tortured, maliciously punished, and deprived of food and water for days at a time.

Flaviane Carvalho said that she felt as if she were 'used like a tool from God to help him'

When law enforcement got a search warrant, they discovered that the boy was kept in a separate hotel room that was used for storage and away from Wilson, the victim’s mother, and a younger sibling.

Duct tape covered the peephole to the victim’s room and he was made to do "military-style exercises, hung upside down from a door by his neck and feet and at one point, handcuffed to a dolly cart on Christmas Day," the state attorney's office said.

Authorities found multiple items the stepfather used as weapons, including a bent metal pole, wooden broom, dolly cart, handcuffs, and ratchet straps used to tie the victim up.

"We probably would've been talking about a potential homicide investigation if she had not intervened when she did," Orlando Police Chief Orlando Rolon told WESH News of the waitress.

Carvalho told the news outlet that she felt as if she was "used like a tool from God to help him."

She also said that she was still in contact with the victim she rescued.

The boy's mother, Kristen Swann, was charged with two counts of child neglect, aggravated child abuse, child abuse and failure to report child abuse by a household member

"Now he's healthy. He's being loved. It's clear on his face and the way he's acting that he's much better now," Carvalho said.

"Justice was served."


A jury found Wilson guilty in June of two counts of false imprisonment on a child under the age of 13, three counts of aggravated child abuse with a weapon, four counts of aggravated child abuse, and one count of child neglect.

Timothy Lee Wilson was sentenced on August 19

On Friday, a judge handed Wilson the maximum sentence on each count against him, which included multiple life sentences.

The boy’s mother, Kristen Swann, also faces abuse charges in connection with the boy's horror experience.

She had a plea and sentence hearing scheduled for Friday and the judge rescheduled her sentencing for September 16.