This baby’s mom and dad demanded justice after what happened to him. The court’s response: No. When the parents heard the reasoning, they couldn’t believe their ears. Do you think the justice system failed this family?
Joshua Marbury and Alicia Quinney, from Sherwood, Oregon, were left absolutely devastated when they found their one-year-old son Jacob with a black eye and several bruises, including one that looked eerily similar to a hand print. “I thought maybe marker got on his face or something,” Alicia explained. “When he turned over, his whole right side of his face — black and blue.”
The parents quickly realized where their son acquired the new marks — his babysitter, who was later identified as 27-year-old Markell D. Hilaire. After the couple had gone on a date, they returned home to find Jacob screaming and crying while the sitter was fast asleep. They sent the untrustworthy caregiver home and soon went to bed. The next morning, however, they realized that Jacob was obviously abused by the caregiver as the bruises had become apparent overnight.
Joshua and Alicia immediately took their child to the hospital, filed a police report, and eagerly waited for a case to be built against the babysitter. Sherwood police said they were certain the babysitter was responsible, and according to Joshua, a detective even said that the attack could have been fatal and that the babysitter confessed to striking the child.
Even so, the parents were still left devastated when authorities told them, two months after the abuse occurred, that they would not be taking any action against the man who beat their infant son, even though he could have killed the child with the type of injuries he inflicted on their precious baby.
Understandably upset, Joshua Marbury wrote a post on Facebook addressing what had happened to his son and demanding justice. “I normally keep my matters with family very private cause I don’t need the attention. But this is different,” he wrote, including the pictures of Jacob’s injuries with the post.
“TWO months ago if not longer my 1-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 hand prints) and the detective said it could have killed him,” he continued.
“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,” Joshua Marbury furthered. “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 hand cuffs immediately).”
Joshua said the babysitter admitted to the abuse, but regardless, the charges were dropped. “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,” he added. In short, the Oregon Court of Appeals ruling stated the victim must be able to describe the attack.
“I am SO furious that I’m not using profanity HOPING something is done and this goes viral. I did my part with GOD and your ‘advise’ to not (resort) to my own action with revenge,” Joshua Marbury added, and just as he had hoped, his post went viral and was shared over 400,000 times.
Luckily, the post also opened the eyes of Washington County Deputy District Attorney Dustin Staten, who decided to consider revisiting the case. Staten explained that “he had not seen the pictures of Jacob that were posted on Facebook, but ‘seeing those photos has caused me to want to take a different path,’” according to Oregon Live.
“It’s so disturbing that they can let somebody walk around and live their life while my whole family is traumatized from this,” Alicia Quinney told the NY Daily News as the couple, who now have trouble trusting anyone to babysit their child, continued to fight for a prosecution in the case.
According to Joshua and Alicia, thanks to the babysitter, who used to be the dad’s best friend, Jacob is still scarred from the attack and cries every time he is away from his mother. “He definitely recovered from the bruises, but inside, this is gonna follow him,” Alicia said.
There is no excuse for a person to abuse a child. Children deserve as much love and respect as the rest of us – if not more. Hopefully, this family will be able to find peace after such a traumatic experience and the babysitter will get what he deserves.
As for the rest of us, let this serve as a reminder that it’s important to take every precaution that we possibly can when it comes to deciding which people we allow to care for our children. You might never know what secrets a person is hiding until it’s too late.