Man filmed whipping his son during game of catch arrested for child abuse
A California water agency director has been arrested on suspicion of felony child abuse after a neighbour shot and posted an online video of him whipping his stepson with a belt while playing catch.
Imperial Irrigation District Director Anthony Sanchez, 34, was arrested on Friday on $100,000 bond after caught hitting the child with a belt in one hand and a baseball glove in the other.
In the video filmed and uploaded to YouTube by neighbour Oscar Lopez, the stepfather is seen repeatedly beating the boy, even knocking him to the ground, before stepping back to wait for him to toss the ball back which he drops.
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Catch: Imperial Irrigation District Director Anthony Sanchez, pictured facing his stepson while holding a belt, has been arrested on suspicion of felony child abuse
Arrested: The 34-year-old public utility director was arrested Friday and held on $100,000 bond after turning himself in to authorities
After a long stall by the boy who stands frozen in place, the man returns to him – a glove on one hand and a belt in the other – hitting him once again.
The boy can be seen physically upset, holding his body, before Mr Lopez opens his window, calling at him to stop.
“Are you having a problem with the way I”m raising my son” Sanchez can be heard responding.
“I”m having a f****** problem with you for beating the s*** out of him because he won”t catch the damn ball.”
“Do you know my son”
“I don”t know your son but I”m watching you. I”m a f****** father too.”
Lopez says he posted the video on Facebook and YouTube then gave it to authorities.
Ongoing: After several minutes of watching the man hit the boy the neighbour, Oscar Lopez, opened his window to yell to the man to stop
Upsetting: The child was visibly upset after hit and thrown to the ground, with the boy holding his body after the attacks
Role model: Mr Lopez, a father himself, expressed his surprise in the man who held both a belt and a glove to play with the boy
“I didn”t understand why he was playing with him and disciplining him,” Mr Lopez told KYMA. “It just didn”t stop.”
Sanchez”s attorney Ryan Childers acknowledges the video is disturbing, but urged people to wait until more details were revealed before reaching any conclusions about the case.
The condition of the boy has not been released.
According to Lt Scott Sheppeard and the Imperial Valley Press, Sanchez has no known prior record of child abuse or anger management issues.
“Every parent in the state of California has the right by law to discipline their child,” Lt Sheppeard said at a press conference, “when you cross the line between what”s legal and what”s not legal is if the infliction of injury.”
Elected to the utility board of directors as a public official, Sanchez”s term expires in December 2014.
Watch the video here: