Smithfield boys burned by neighbor released from hospitals

LOGAN — The two young Smithfield boys who were allegedly burned by a neighbor last week have returned home.  The Coulam family explained that both boys have been released from the hospitals, where they were being treated for burns to their faces, eyes and bodies.

A statement from the family said, “We would like to express our sincere gratitude to family, friends, community members, and all of those who have included our family and especially our sweet little boys in their prayers.  We are especially grateful for the law enforcement and fire that responded, and the medical staff at Logan Regional Hospital and the University of Utah Burn Center.”

According to police, 32-year-old Jason Summers approached the two-boys last Friday night and threw a chemical-like substance on them.  Both children were initially treated at Logan Regional Hospital.  The five-year-old had minor burns on his back and was later released.  The three-year-old sustained more severe burns to his face, eyes and chest.  He was later taken to the University of Utah Burn Center.

The family’s statement went onto describe that both boys are home and doing well.  “It is a blessing and a miracle that they are healing so quickly.  We appreciate the love and support of our family and community as we continue to help our boys heal physically and emotionally.”

Summers tried to flee several times from officers before being arrested.  He is being held in the Cache County Jail without bail.  State attorneys have charged the Smithfield resident with two counts of child abuse, a second-degree felony, obstructing justice and escaping from custody, a third-degree felony, and three other misdemeanors.  He is scheduled to appear again in court July 10.

Police were able to recover some of the substance that Summers threw on the boys.  It shows some similar consistency to drain cleaner.  The Bear River Health Department is analyzing it.

Officers are still unsure of a motive because Summers has continued to refuse to speak with them.  It appears the “crystal” type substance was wrapped up inside a paper towel, when thrown at the boys.  The Coulams told investigators, the suspect had been acting “odd in recent months.”

In 2016, he was convicted of discharging a firearm and possession of drugs, after he broke into an LDS Church and then tried to shoot at a neighbor. He was ordered to serve 90-days in jail and then placed on probation for one-year.

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