Concerned bystanders rescued the boy from the waves and called the police, Fox 35 reported.
John Bloodsworth, 37, was booked into Volusia County Jail, arrest records show, on July 16, on a range of charges.
Bloodsworth, who was cited by WESH as saying he was being jailed “for being awesome” was charged with disorderly intoxication, jumping off the pier, and aggravated abuse of a child.
He claimed he was just trying to teach his son how to swim.
A police report cited by WESH noted that Bloodsworth told officers, “he was going to jail for being awesome. And would bring his daughter next time to jump.”
Witnesses cited by WESH said Bloodsworth had thrown his son into the water and as the little boy struggled to keep his head above water in a deep part of the ocean, the father would climb onto the pier repeatedly and jump into the water.
“The little kid was out here by himself,” said Mitch Brown, a former Georgia State Trooper who witnessed the occurrence. “Completely by himself,” Brown told WESH. “There was nobody around him, no adults.”
Brown, who was vacationing in Daytona Beach with his family, said he couldn’t take what he was seeing and confronted Bloodsworth.
“I said, ‘you’re coming with me, one way or another,’” Brown told the news outlet, adding that he brought Bloodsworth to a police officer, who made the arrest.
Another witness, Nate Poole, told Fox 35 he was alarmed by Bloodsworth’s behavior.
“As soon as he jumped off, I came here to watch the kid to make sure he didn’t do nothing,” Poole told Fox 35. “It was quick, so I just had to watch him.”
“It’s terrible. Who would do that? It just doesn’t make any sense,” witness Lori Seal told Fox 35.
“It looked like he was intoxicated,” Poole said of Bloodsworth.
Police cited by Fox 35 said the child didn’t show any signs of injuries.
Bloodsworth bonded out of jail on Tuesday, according to the report.
Man Throws Another Man Off Florida Bridge
A Florida man was arrested in September 2018 after allegedly throwing another man from a bridge in Daytona Beach as an officer was driving by.
The Daytona Beach Police Department released body camera footage that appears to show 21-year-old Derrick Goodin throwing the man over a bridge.
The department said in a statement that he was involved in an argument with a woman over money as she crossed a bridge with a friend over the Halifax River. Goodin allegedly threw the woman’s bike over and then threw over her friend, an unidentified man, after an argument.
“A Daytona Beach Police officer was just heading over the bridge when he spotted Goodin tossing the victim into the water,” police said.
Goodwin was seen by police standing with the man before throwing him over the bridge.
The officer then emerged from his vehicle, telling him to get down on the ground and surrender.
It wasn't enough to fight his victim on the Main Street Bridge. Derrick Goodin also had to toss the man – head first – over the railing and into the shallow water below. @DBCops1 caught him in the act. Arrested! pic.twitter.com/NjA3AReB9P
— Daytona Beach Police (@DaytonaBchPD) September 24, 2018
“On the ground right now! Get the [expletive] on the ground! Main Street Bridge, I’ve got a male throw another male off the bridge. I got one at gunpoint,” the officer says in the video.
“It’s not every day that we’re driving and we see a human being throwing another human being into a body of water,” Daytona Beach Police spokeswoman Lyda Longa told Fox News.
WFTV reported that the man who was thrown over the bridge was picked up by someone in a rowboat.
“He only had a gash over his eye, which is very fortunate for that kind of incident,” said Longa.
Goodin was arrested on battery and disorderly conduct charges.
“I mean over there it’s pretty shallow but he fell I think into the channel which is even worse because, you know, he could have been unconscious and been hit by a passing motorboat,” McKenzie Reijonen, a witness, said to Fox News. “I was just worried that he could have been punched unconscious or drowning or somewhere down there in the water and I did what I hoped somebody would do for me,” he added.
Epoch Times reporter Jack Phillips contributed to this report.