An Oregon babysitter, Markell Hilaire, made headlines for hitting and smacking a 1-year-old left in his care is making headlines again. This time, it’s because the court failed to charge him due to an antiquated Oregon law. The baby, Jacob, was left with visible bruises all over his little face and a black eye. He was also left with the the imprint of Hilarie’s palm from where he hit him. Multiple doctors that examined the baby and even the Sheriff stated that the beating could have killed the young child.
The charges were deferred because the young boy was unable to articulate that he was abused. This is due to a 2012 Oregon Court of Appeals ruling that stated, ‘a victim must be able to describe the attack.’ The parents, Joshua Marbury and Alicia Quinney, are rightfully furious that their sons attacker will not be served justice in court.
The brave parents decided to take matters into their own hands, and made a Facebook post about their situation hoping it would go viral and bring attention to their sons case. Their post was successful in going viral, it was shared 275,000 times in the first three days that it went up.
Marbury’s post outlined the stress that their family has been under since the attack on their child. He also highlighted the fact that law enforcement and medical personnel all saw the evidence of the abuse and made it clear his son could of died. Marbury felt it was ridiculous that it took two months since the day of the attack for anything to be done by the courts, and then the only thing they did was drop the charges.
He drew a parallel suggesting that if an adult was caught abusing another one, they would be taken to jail right away. He poignantly finished his post off with ‘After TWO months of waiting we only find out that charges were 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.’
A Change.org petition was shortly launched after the fathers post asking for a change on the 2012 law. It garnered over 55,000 signatures. Since then, Markell Hilaire has been arrested according to the district attorney. Details were not given out on what charges the court provided him with. He is being held in custody on $10,000 bail.
The boy’s mother posted on Facebook ‘At this point our case is in the hands of the justice system.’ Say what you will about social media, there is no denying it does a lot of good things.