A Navy Petty Officer and his wife have been charged with child abuse after a video shows the choking a 7-month-old-baby.
The Camden County Sherriff’s Office responded to a complaint on Sunday night around 8:16 pm to a Maple Court address on Kings Bay Naval Base.
Kings Bay Police Department met Camden County Sherriff’s outside the home and informed the Sheriff’s office there was a questionable video of the baby being hung up by his neck by the mother physically abusing their 7-month-old son.
The video shows Navy Third Class Petty Officer Jonathan Harrell filming a dispute with his wife, Latoya Harell. The video shows the wife pouring water over the child’s face, with an open mouth, according to the report. The child can be heard on the video coughing and choking from the water being poured on his face, thus gagging.
Deputies say that in the video, Latoya Harrell can also be seen tieing a “scarf type object” in a “noose type fashion” around the child’s neck, holding him up in the air. The infant can be seen fully suspended off the bed with eyes “bulging and watering,” according to the deputies report.
The deputies said the child’s father did not “appear to be alarmed” about the child’s well being after being choked by the mom. In the video, Latoya Harrell then drops the infant on the bed and leaves the room along with Jonathan Harrell not assisting the child.
Upon questioning from deputies, Mr. Harrell was asked why he recorded the video, and he told authorities that he did not want to get in trouble and lose his family.
Latoya Harrell first denied any knowledge of the video but later said she was only trying to pick up her son and not choke him. She had no comment about the alleged water bottle incident involving her 7-month-old-son.
The family has already received a DFACS referral filed on them before, according to Johnathan Harrell’s report to the deputies. Mr. Harrell said the recording of the video is 2-months old and admitted the wife had mental health issues, according to the deputies report.
There were three other children in the home when the incident occurred. The children were taken into custody of DFACS.
The parents, Johnathan and Layota Harrell, were taken to the Camden County Jail where they received charges of first-degree child cruelty.
Full report below –Harrell CCSO