Police: Mom Left Three Kids In The Desert As Punishment

Chelsea Hoffman

A California mom and her boyfriend have been arrested after authorities in Twentynine Palms discovered that they had abandoned three children in the desert in the sweltering summer sun. WCNC News reports that the couple have provided a reason for why the kids were left in the hot desert, and that reason is attracting a lot of attention.

SF Gate reports that authorities witnessed the three children — ages 5, 6, and 7 — walking down a desert road in Twentynine Palms. They allege that the children did not have shoes or water while wandering in the desert in broiling heat. The temperatures on Wednesday, the day of the incident, reached as high as 104 degrees.

When police located the children’s mother and her boyfriend, the couple admitted to abandoning them in the desert. The California mom told police that they did it to discipline the children. In other words, the three kids — all under the age of 8-years-old — were put out in the sweltering desert heat with no shoes or water as a form of punishment.

This isn’t the first time parents have made headlines for seemingly brutal forms of punishment toward their kids. In 2012, a 9-year-old girl named Savannah Hardin died while being punished by her grandmother and stepmother. People reports that the 9-year-old girl was forced to run nonstop for approximately three hours, all because she ate a candy bar and then lied about it. During the three-hour punishment run, the little girl collapsed and had a seizure. She died at the hospital.

Last year, a 9-year-old boy named Jack Garcia was beaten to death by his mother and uncle. The reason for the brutal beating was allegedly because the child had stolen a piece of birthday cake. The child suffered numerous injuries, which led to his death.

Earlier this year, a Texas mom (along with her boyfriend) allegedly beat her 4-year-old daughter to death as a form of punishment. The punishment was because the little girl had taken her little brother’s juice to drink it. The beating death of the 4-year-old girl has been described as absolutely vicious in numerous media reports.

As for this latest case of extreme punishment, both the children’s mother and her boyfriend have been arrested. Authorities confirm that 34-year-old Mary Bell and 29-year-old Gary Cassle have been charged with felony child abuse in association with dumping the young children in the desert without water or shoes. Meanwhile, social media has taken an interest in this incident, with discussion focusing on whether or not some parents take things too far when it comes to punishment. Plenty of people are also calling for the parents to be punished in as cruel a manner that they allegedly punished the three kids.

No mugshots have been published of the California mom or her boyfriend. However, reports have confirmed that the couple is being held on bond in the amount of $100,000. Some reports have also revealed that the couple is homeless. No reports have clarified at this time whether or not the children have been removed from the custody of their mother and her boyfriend.

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