Mother of Little Boy Attacked in Desert Hot Springs Gives Update on His Condition

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Seven-year-old Gavin Ludwick is still in the hospital recovering from a head injury after being brutally attacked on his way home from a pool party in Desert Hot Springs. 

Gavin’s mom Wendy has not left the hospital since he was admitted on July 18. 

“To see him lying in the hospital bed, uncomfortable, crying not being able to play like he normally does is just heartbreaking,” says Wendy. 

Wendy says Gavin is now making small progress like sitting up and moving his left arm. While doctors don’t know the extent of the damage yet because his brain still has swelling, they do know he will need physical and speech therapies and surgeries until he stops growing. 

“He has to have a titanium plate inserted because the bones were so broken, fragmented and he’ll have to have that replaced as his head grows,” she says. 

Police say 32-year old Daniel Poulsen beat Gavin, who never even saw him coming.

Wendy says he was just feet away from getting home, “And this man cut across my neighbor’s front yard  picked up a large rock and he walked up to Gavin and just smashed the rock into his head … he was almost home and this evil man attacked him.”

Poulsen was charged with attempted murder. The judge admonished Poulsen several times for outbursts during his court appearance earlier this month. The court ordered a mental evaluation before he can stand trial.

Poulsen has a long criminal record that includes lewd acts, molesting a child under 18 and was deemed mentally incompetent to stand trial. 11 other times

Wendy is angry and says it’s frustrating that Poulsen who lived a few  doors down from her was on the streets, “It’s completely outrageous,” adding he should serve life in prison so he won’t be able to hurt another child.

This has been a tough year for Wendy and her family. Her husband died of cancer just a few months ago.

“He was my everything and he was Gavin’s daddy, he and Gavin were so close, and to lose him and then to have this happen, I don’t know why,” says Wendy.

She finds hope in the support the community has shown her family because they will need it for months maybe years to come

“The world’s  not full of the bad people and it’s not a bad place, there’s so many good people still here and I appreciate it so much,” she says.


An account was set up by a family friend to support the family with Gavin’s medical bills.

To help little Gavin and donate to his medical expenses click here: HELP GAVIN

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