A Lake Crystal man is charged with malicious punishment of a child and two counts of domestic assault after Blue Earth County Sheriff’s Deputies say a three-year-old boy told investigators that the bruises on his face were caused by his mom’s friend, “Phil.”

The preschooler said the marks on each side of his face were caused when 26-year-old Phillip Gindt wrapped his hands around the boy’s neck when he was “in trouble.” The child also said it happened on more than one occasion.

Gindt claimed the bruises were caused by rough play and the victim’s mother told deputies they were caused by Gindt tickling the child under the jaw.

The criminal complaint shows the boy’s father asked the child about the bruises and the three-year-old told him Gindt did it and gestured putting hands to his throat.