Father, mother of 3-year-old WI boy killed speak out - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Father, mother of 3-year-old WI boy killed speak out

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RACINE (WKOW) -- Friends and family remember a 3-year-old boy police say was tortured to death by his mother's boyfriend.

Police tell WISN 12 News Hunter Wise likely died from shock brought on by trauma. Police say his mother's boyfriend, Marcus Johnson, 26, beat him, then forced him into a tub full of scalding water after the young boy soiled himself.

Hunter's family, friends and other supporters had a vigil for him Tuesday night in Racine. His father, Joseph Wise, tells WISN, "Life is not going to be the same. It's never going to be the same without him there. My whole life pretty much revolved around him."

Wise said when he talked with his son last week, Hunter didn't want to go to his mother's home in Mount Pleasant for a scheduled visit. "It's going to be hard to live the rest of my life knowing that the last time I saw him he fought harder than he ever did to go," Joseph told WISN.

Hunter's mother, Samantha Rush, was visibly upset at the vigil. She told WISN, "So many people loved him, and every time I want to talk about him, I just cry. It's just so hard to deal with. I just can't believe this."

Blue balloons were released into the sky Tuesday at the Wise family home. Nearly 150 people were there for the vigil.  A fund has been set up for Hunter Wise at Educators Credit Union.

Family members tell WISN two other children who lived in the Mount Pleasant home with Rush and Johnson are being cared for by local child protective services. Marcus Johnson is being held on $500,000 bond.

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