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Eden Prairie father charged for inflicting lashing wounds on his child with a tree branch

The girl contacted child protection services with a school iPad.

An Eden Prairie father-of-five is facing a felony charge of malicious punishment of a child after being accused by child abuse by his daughter. 

According to a criminal complaint, a child living at a home in the 8700 block of Leeward Circle in Eden Prairie used a school-issued iPad to report physical abuse at the hands of her father to Hennepin County Child Protection. 

Police conducted a welfare check on Nov. 15 and found the girl with numerous fresh lashing injuries visible on her leg. The child told police that her father whipped her with a tree branch and a belt as punishment for something that happened at school. 

Her father, 38-year-old Craig Douglas Underwood II, admitted that he struck his child and told police that he has "every right to whoop her." 

The girl was taken to a hospital for x-rays and treatment for soft tissue injuries. 

The Star Tribune reports that Underwood, who is now out of jail after posting bail, lost custody of the girl but still has custody with his wife of their other four children. 

If convicted, Underwood faces up to a year in jail and/or a $3,000 fine.  

Minnesota law defines physical child abuse as "unreasonably restraining a child with tying, caging or chaining and excessive or unreasonably forceful discipline that leave injuries or marks on a child."

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