A couple in Ohio apparently returned their 9-year-old son to Butler County Children Services last month amid claims the boy has aggressive behaviors and would not agree to get help. He had been raised by the couple since he was an infant.
Cleveland and Lisa Cox of Liberty Township, Ohio, were each indicted Wednesday on a misdemeanor count of nonsupport of dependents, according to The Blaze. The charge accuses them of recklessly abandoning or failing to provide adequate support for the boy.
“When you are the parent and you recklessly abandon a child or children, there are criminal consequences,” County Prosecutor Michael Gmoser said. “These children don’t have a return-to-sender stamp emblazoned on their forehead.”
The Journal-News reports the parents said the boy has aggressive behaviors and will not agree to get help, according to Adolfo Olivas, an attorney appointed by the court to protect the child’s legal interests.
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“The parents were willing to get help but the child wasn’t. That just is nonsense to me,” Olivas stated. “A parent is a parent and a 9-year-old is a 9-year-old. If your 9-year-old needs help, you get him help. It is not a question of a 9-year-old wanting it or not.”
The charge is a first-degree misdemeanor and if the couple is found guilty, they could face up to six months in jail and a $1,000 fine.