An Oregon couple is upset after recently learning the state’s law bars their babysitter from being charged for allegedly abusing their son because the boy is too young to describe his pain.
According to Joshua Marbury and Alicia Quinney, the parents of Jacob, 1, their babysitter may never face any charges for allegedly hitting their son while they were out on a date in March.
In an extensive Facebook post, Marbury shared pictures of his son, Jacob, that showed bruises on the child’s face. Marbury said the incident occurred in March when they were out on a date.
The Marburys were outraged that an Oregon court ruling was blocking the alleged abuser from facing criminal charges.
Markell Deon Hilaire, 27, of Tacoma, Wash., was arrested in connection with the abuse, according to the Washington County District Attorney’s Office.
Hilaire faces three felony charges, criminal mistreatment in the first degree, assault in the third degree, and assault in the fourth degree. Each charge carries the maximum penalty of five years in prison.
The babysitter was Marbury’s best friend of 10 years. Alicia Quinney, Jacob’s mother, said Hilaire admitted to police he hit Jacob.
“TWO months ago if not longer, my one-year-old son was smacked across the right side of his face by our babysitter (keep this person anonymous) to the point where MULTIPLE doctors (who in fact showed us handprints) and the detective said it could have killed him. After several days if not a week of being distracted at my job (only commission sales job and only source of income), we had a confession from the abuser saying they did it. STILL, this person was not arrested because they had to build a case and a jury to find him guilty BEFORE they go to jail.
“Side note if I’m not mistaken (if I strike a person in the face and the cops were called, I would be put in handcuffs immediately). After TWO months of waiting, we only find out that charges are dropped BECAUSE my one-year-old cannot tell you verbally he was abused, and my son did not show he was in pain OR that this person “intentionally” did this. I am SO furious that I’m not using profanity, HOPING something is done, and this goes viral.”
According to an Oregon state law, prosecutors must prove that the victim has suffered physical damage and experienced significant pain. It makes it difficult when the victim is a child who can’t talk about the incident, despite the fact that the accused in this case admitted to it.
The family feels terrible about the incident and is trying to deal with the trauma. Alicia told Oregon Live that her trust in others has been damaged. “My trust with so many people is shot,” she said. “This isn’t something we can move on from.”
Watch the video report below for more details: