Dad accused of tossing girl off bridge called lawyer ‘God’

Phoebe Jonchuck, age 5 (Photo courtesy Melody Dishman). John Jonchuck mug shot, Pinellas County Jail.
Phoebe Jonchuck, age 5 (Photo courtesy Melody Dishman). John Jonchuck mug shot, Pinellas County Jail.

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) – Florida’s Department of Children and Families is changing its abuse hotline criteria after a man threw his 5-year-old daughter off a bridge.

DCF Secretary Mike Carroll announced the changes on Thursday. Police say that late Wednesday night, John Jonchuck threw his 5-year-old daughter Phoebe off a bridge.

If a caregiver is believed to be experiencing a psychotic episode, a child protective investigator would have to visit the child within four hours of a call.

The Florida Department of Children and Families said late Thursday that the agency received a call to the abuse hotline at 2:45 p.m. Wednesday “regarding the mental health of Phoebe’s father.”

The anonymous caller said Jonchuck was “depressed and delusional.”

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