Mom in jail after pic of toddler hanging from a hook goes viral on Facebook

Baby shoesA Virginia woman is facing felony child abuse charges after a disturbing photo of her 14-month-old son hanging by his shirt from a hook, was uploaded to Facebook by the boy's father and eventually got the attention of the sheriff's department. The boy's father, Anthony Welch,18, apparently shared the photo in retaliation for an argument he had with the mother, Alexis Breeden, 18.

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Breeden maintains that the whole thing was "a joke." Though news sources have blurred the boy's face in the photo to protect his identity, it is said that the original photo (which has been removed from Facebook) showed the child to be in distress. This prompted a number of people to report Breeden to the sheriff's office. Though the sheriff has determined that no harm was done to the little boy, charges have not been dropped.

Breeden and Welch are no longer a couple, and as evidenced on his Facebook page, their relationship is a strained one. In fact, the situation on Facebook goes from bad to worse, with allegations of abuse and molestation being thrown around by both the baby's mother and father. In a rant posted on November 1, Welch said, "Its funny how people talkn shit bout me doin shit to my son u got a sik mind u dum bitches fr talkn bout i molasted my son but alexis was telln me sence i wouldnt give her dik she would get my son to take my spot...i aint never touch my son no type of way or ever hit him but alexis would get mad at me and scream at him and say its all landons fault or she would push him away or throw him off her." (sic)

We all do silly things with our kids. We all share silly photos of our kids doing silly things. Most of the time it's funny. Do I think hanging a crying baby from a hook is funny? Absolutely not. Do I think it's possible someone else could think it was funny? Yes. But given the history here, and all of the other evidence surrounding these people, I'm pretty sure the concern is warranted. Even if Breeden's intentions were not malicious in this particular instance, it's pretty evident that neither the child's mother or father is fit to care for him properly. If someone even feels the need to mention molestation or abuse -- let alone bring it up on social media--there must be some pretty serious underlying problems.

I hope that someone finds this sweet baby a good home, and that his parents learn that child abuse is no joke, no matter how funny a photo might seem. That this child deserves parents who can respect him and respect each other. 

Image via via CBS 6 WTVR/Thinkstock

Topics: abuse  arrest  baby  child abuse  in the news