Man who hung, hit son nabbed
SAN PEDRO CITY—Government social workers are preparing a complaint for child abuse against a tricycle driver, who was seen in a viral video hitting his four-year-old son as the child hung upside down by a window in the family’s house in Sta. Rosa City, Laguna province.
The 31-year-old father, also a rescue volunteer in the city, was arrested on Thursday noon, said Supt. Eugene Orate, Sta. Rosa police chief.
Elizabeth Dumalag of the City Social Welfare and Development Office said the incident happened on Dec. 24 at Barangay Pooc.
The man videotaped himself as he tied his son upside down with handcuffs by their window. He then began punching and slapping the child, as shown in the video that ran for almost three minutes.
“[The man] was heard saying, ‘Are you happy now?’ apparently addressing the child’s mother,” Dumalag said in a telephone interview.
Orate said the man sent the video to his partner who left him weeks ago.
“He used the video to blackmail the mother into coming home to them,” he said.
As of Thursday, police and social workers said they had yet to hear from the mother, who was reportedly in Iloilo province.
Dumalag said the mother sent the video to a sibling in Sta. Cruz town, Laguna, who then sought authorities’ help in rescuing the child. Social workers took custody of the boy on Christmas Day.
“So far we see marks (left by the handcuffs) on the child’s left leg. He seems OK except that our foster parent has [found it difficult] to put him to sleep because he cries at night,” Dumalag said.
“If the mother decides not to press charges, [then] we will [file the case],” Dumalag said. —MARICAR CINCO
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