Father Charged Over Son's Sunburn Appears In Court

A Madison County father who police say is responsible for his son's serious sunburn entered a not guilty plea on Wednesday morning.

27-year-old Bobby Jones is charged with criminal abuse after police say he left his two-year-old son in the hot sun for too long.

Berea Police say Jones let his son play outside on Sunday for at least an hour and a half without any sunscreen or protection from the sun. The result, large blisters, which doctors say are 2nd and 3rd degree burns.

Police say the father never said anything about the blisters. The boy's mother noticed them when she came to pick him up.


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  • by standing up for the kids Location: east us on Jun 29, 2009 at 01:15 PM
    Those defending the father need to think about this a little more. This child was 2 and does not know it needs sunscreen. There is a big difference between a 2 year old and a 10 year old that can tell if they are getting burned. I am glad to see the father was charged with child abuse for the neglect of this 2 year old. Too many times nothing is done.
  • by Ken Location: Calgary, Alberta on Jun 11, 2009 at 12:14 AM
    Is there anyone down there scratching their head and saying "Are they serious?" From now on, any child suffering from sunburn will be deemed to have been abused. The courts are going to be overwhelmed and true justice is going to be thrown out the window. Isn't there a judge somewhere who has the guts to charge the so-called complainant with contempt for bringing such frivolous and vindictive charges before him? The father was outside watching the boy play. He was as likely to get sunburn as his son yet he didn't see any danger to himself let alone his son. Yes, his son did get 1st and 2nd degree burns from the sun (not 3rd degree as reported by some sources) but please give the dad a break. It's called 'life' and sometimes you have to learn the hard way. Next time, if he ever gets the opportunity, Dad will be more careful.
  • by distressed at 17 Location: st. louis missouri on Jul 6, 2008 at 02:23 PM
    this case is outrageous. i'm 17 years old and i can see this. yea the sun can cause cancer...what can't these days? my dad passed away so i know what its like not to be have one. fortunately i made it to 17 before i lost him. this kid has an entirely different story. i mean what is the mom going to tell the boy when he grows up. sorry son, you never knew your father because he let you get a sunburn. i think he will be a little more upset with her than with him. KIDS GET BURNED! seriously where is it going to end. i am afraid to have kids some day simply because of the way the government tries to control how parents raise their kids.
  • by mary Location: m'boro, tn on Jun 17, 2008 at 10:40 PM
    no worse than with my child getting a bruise caused by a new faultily made car seat and now 15 months later i've been tpr'd for "improperly use of a car seat" and "unexplained brusies" --people wake up!!! states get federal money for all the kids they can get into foster care not to educate parents and keep families together in the home. people need to start standing up for their GOD and Consititutonally guarenteed parental rights
  • by Dad Location: Indy on Jun 17, 2008 at 01:26 PM
    Of course Dad screwed up by not using any sunscreen, that is a given. It would seem that dad needs some education not incarceration, at least from the content of this story. I am a Dad that deals with this issue every time I see my 5 year old son. We live it up fishing, swimming, baseball and anything that is fun and most of the time we are outside. He has fair skin and often times is gets minor burns. His mother is very "protective" and typically gives me a huge ration or stuff (you know what I wanted to write) for the burns. They are sometimes uncomforatble to him and she babies him a bit. Last weekend this situation came up again and there were some threatening emails and it was not very pleasant. Although I applied spf50 every hour, and let her know, she still put me through the fire. My best advice is do what you can with your kids and do your best to not let that battle interfere, that is what lawyers are for. Be with your kids and don;t waste time dealing with the bad.
  • by Jessica Location: louisville on Jun 17, 2008 at 12:45 PM
    What is wrong with the people on this post who are defending this father? My 5 year old son had his grandfather die of melanoma and I also had melanoma. The sun kills thousands of people every single year and melanoma is a very deadly cancer once you have it. It is a well known fact that sunburns in childhood can lead to melanoma in adulthood. I cannot imagine letting my 5 year old go outside in the heat without any sunscreen. That is neglect. I have been angry with my own son's father because of not putting enough sunscreen on my son. And no, there's no alterior motive except that my son is 5 and as a parent it's my duty to protect him since he cannot protect himself. After all..that is a parent's duty..to protect their children. How can anyone blame this mother for wanting to protect her child??
  • by spf 500 Location: a shady spot on Jun 16, 2008 at 09:40 AM
    well good grief! i forgot to remind my 15 yo son, whose hair i just buzzed off, to wear a hat or throw on sunscreen while we attended an end of the year picnic. needless to say after 3 hours of soccer, baseball, picnicking, and such, his scalp, that hasn't seen the sun in over a year cause he wouldn't get a haircut, was majorly burned!! oversights happen...altho with a 2 yo the dad should've been outside with him...he probably would've been able to sense the sun's intensity and at least thrown a shirt on the little boy. i'm just glad my kids aren't in a divorce situation cause i'm sure this is why he was reported/arrested.
  • by not an ex Location: TN on Jun 14, 2008 at 09:01 PM
    It is clear the mom is using the child as a weapon as so often happens in cases of divorce. Sometimes it's hard to see a burn until the evening hours. Yes, he should have used sunscreen, but he will probably have his visitation with his son taken away because of this and the mom will get what she wanted. My 3 yr old grandson got stitches inhis forehead while at our house and his mom made a federal case out of it. It didn't matter that he had gotten a broken leg while getting his diaper changed by her. Just because you're a mom doesn't make you the better parent, we all make mistakes as we raise our kids. And we learn from those mistakes. Apparently what she learned was how to work the system to her advantage.
  • by JR Location: Middlesboro on Jun 14, 2008 at 07:33 PM
    This was just a bonehead mistake. I have seen a child that got hold of medicine the "parent" left out and their kids were not taken.
  • by Terry Location: Frankfort on Jun 13, 2008 at 06:24 PM
    i think we should draw up a petition to have these charges dropped against this dad...it just a accident.....let see what we can do.....

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