Althea Ricketts says that where she comes from, hitting kids with computer cables is a "common" way to discipline them. This is ostensibly why she allegedly she beat her son with a computer cable for having a Facebook page.
Unfortunately for Ricketts, 62, most people come from places where hitting children with objects constitutes child abuse, even if the children disobey their parents. And so police arrested and charged the Apopka, Florida mom with aggravated child abuse and took her to the Orange County Jail, where she's being held without bail.
Ricketts had reportedly told the boy not to have a Facebook page, but he went ahead and made one anyhow. On Friday night, a neighbor noticed that the boy had created a post indicating that he might hurt himself, and called up Ricketts to let her know about it:
An arrest report states that Ricketts called back and told the woman she'd hit her son and he'd run away from home. He was later found at a friend's home on Try Court with injuries to both arms, police said.
When interviewed by police, the boy, whose name and age were redacted from arresting documents, said his mother had gotten angry and had beaten him with a cable.
A resident of the home where the boy fled told police that he was nervous and crying when he arrived. When asked, Ricketts reportedly told the resident that the boy "deserved everything he got."
Where I come from, you don't beat up your kid for expressing suicidal thoughts—you get them medical attention and give them support. If this story's all true, then it sounds like what the boy deserves is better parenting.
[Orlando Sentinel. Images via Sentinel, AP]