Seven months old

Shannon Bates, 29, called police Fri. Allegedly she told them that her boyfriend Josh Harper, 19,  had struck her with an open hand and his fist, and then prevented her from leaving. When he fell asleep, she made the call to 911. Shannon and Josh were living with relatives.

Shannon also told police that the 7 month old baby girl had been abused. Shannon had bruises and the child reportedly was covered in bruises. Further examination of the baby showed signs of sexual assault, it is thought this had occurred several times over at least the last couple of months.

Police were investigating, but initially they felt the mother was a victim. Further into the investigation they received information that the mother may have been aware of or have participated in the abuse to some degree. They believe the child was not only physically and sexually abused, they believe she had also been tied up.

Harper is charged with felony child endangerment, felony sexual assault against a minor under the age of 14, corporal injury to a minor, corporal injury to a spouse or cohabitant, making terrorist threats and false imprisonment. Bates was arrested on suspicion of felony child endangerment.

Neighbors have said that deputies have been to the home before, but not for anything like this. It has also been alleged that this baby is Bate's youngest child. Reportedly, she lost custody of her other three. Her 11 year old is in foster care, and the two others are with their father.,1,1703991.story?coll=la-headlines-california

I don't know…..what can you say about a woman who will call 911 for her own safety, but not for her child? It was reported that the couple lived with relatives, and I am curious whose relatives they were living with, his or hers.

 A baby, covered in bruises. How could no one notice? A child being abused, how could no one have heard? A baby being beaten, tied up and assaulted- how could a mother stand by? Allegedly the sexual assault at least went on for two months. How could a mother just let it happen? There were others in the household, did she never tell anyone? Could she not pick up a phone? Is this the first time he fell asleep? Did she never leave the home? She alleges that she was being held hostage, but police have been there before. Why did she not tell them? Would they not have helped?

Twenty nine years old, the mother of four- and now custody of none. An older child in foster care, and now a baby in foster care.

Nineteen years old. The father is not being mentioned, I wonder if this is the "father".  Accused of sexually assaulting and beating a 7 month old baby. Was this because he knew it caused the mother pain and fear? Did he threaten the life of the child? It sounds as though the child's life was in danger whether he verbalized it or not. Is it sexual attraction to babies or is it the desire to control? A baby is often hard to control. They wake, eat and sleep on their own schedules. After neglect and abuse, they often learn that making noise, brings pain- even little ones will try to learn to stay quiet. Wonder if it made him feel more like a man to beat up on a 7 month old? To be able to exert control over a baby?

Seven months old. If she had been ill, efforts would have been made to relieve her pain. But she never got that kind of consideration. What a way to start a life. Out of the seven months she has lived, at least two of them she was being sexually assaulted. She is in protective custody now, at least now she has some chance at a life.

I have known about this since last night. I told myself I was waiting to write about it until more was known. That is a lie. This one was tough just to write about. I cannot imagine living it.



  1. Magnolia said,

    April 26, 2006 at 10:21 pm

    This one sent me into a raging tantrum…which is never good…but after I’m done yelling and cussin’,I take a deap breath and plan my next move.
    And yes, still wanting to believe prison justice is NOT a myth.

  2. April 27, 2006 at 2:19 am

    Babies are so helpless and fragile. I just cannot understand how a man can see them as a sexual attraction or hurt them in any way, sexual or not!

%d bloggers like this: