A Tennessee judge has dropped criminal charges against a woman who was accused of live-streaming herself abusing her 1-month-old daughter and blowing smoke near her face.
Last month, Tybresha Sexton, 24, was taken into custody for charges of aggravated child abuse or neglect, resisting arrest or obstruction of a legal process, and disorderly conduct.
The Hamilton County District Attorney’s Office told local station Newschannel9 that the footage failed to show a criminal offense had taken place. However, the Assistant District Attorney Ben Boyer described the video as “disturbing,” but he said it would be a hard case to prove that neglect had taken place.
Sexton wasn’t filmed hitting the baby, he noted to the news outlet.
She was arrested last month after neighbors spotted a Facebook Live stream of her smoking near her baby in addition to apparently grabbing her daughter by the arm and dropping her.
The video can be viewed here.
An officer who responded in the case said that she smelled of alcohol and made irrational statements, WLOS reported last month.
She told them that the reports of her abusing the child weren’t true. Neighbors then arrived on the scene and showed police clips of the 30-minute video of her allegedly shaking the infant, the report said.
According to a police affidavit cited by WLOS, Sexton loudly stated that she “didn’t want that [expletive] baby anyway.” It also said that she “already told them that.”
When she was taken to jail, police said that she caused disorder and told officers the statement about not wanting the baby, WRCB-TV reported.
After the incident, WLOS reported the infant is with her mother.
“I can see that because she did not hit the child,” said Beverley Edmonds about the judge’s recent decision, according to Newschannel9. Edmonds lives at the same apartment complex.
Edmonds said that she has children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. Then she said she understands that it’s hard to raise a child, but her behavior was not appropriate.
“You don’t drink or smoke, or do whatever you’re going to do around a small infant,” said Edmonds.
Facts About Crime in the United States
Violent crime in the United States has fallen sharply over the past 25 years, according to both the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reports (UCR) and the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) (pdf).
The rate of violent crimes fell by 49 percent between 1993 and 2017, according to the FBI’s UCR, which only reflects crimes reported to the police.
The violent crime rate dropped by 74 percent between 1993 and 2017, according to the BJS’s NCVS, which takes into account both crimes that have been reported to the police and those that have not.
The FBI recently released preliminary data for 2018. According to the Preliminary Semiannual Uniform Crime Report, January to June 2018, violent crime rates in the United States dropped by 4.3 percent compared to the same six-month period in 2017.
While the overall rate of violent crime has seen a steady downward drop since its peak in the 1990s, there have been several upticks that bucked the trend. Between 2014 and 2016, the murder rate increased by more than 20 percent, to 5.4 per 100,000 residents, from 4.4, according to an Epoch Times analysis of FBI data. The last two-year period that the rate soared so quickly was between 1966 and 1968.