MILWAUKEE (AP) — A Wisconsin man who found a severely malnourished 15-year-old girl walking barefoot outside in pajamas says she was bleeding from a gash on her nose and crying.

Mike Vega told The Associated Press on Wednesday that the teen he found walking near her Madison home Feb. 6 also had scrapes and a big bruise on her forehead and was so scrawny he mistook her for an 8-year-old.

READ MORE: Jason DeRusha Announces Transition To New Role At WCCO-TV

Vega says while they waited in his car for an ambulance to arrive, she told him her stepmother had thrown her down the basement stairs and that she escaped through a window.

READ MORE: With Anti-Asian Hate On The Rise, School Program Focuses On Mental Health For AAPI Youth

Police say the girl told officers her father and stepmother had kept her confined to the basement for years and had starved her and even forced her to eat her feces.

MORE NEWS: Next Weather: Warmer Tuesday, Rainy Wednesday

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)