Monday, August 8, 2022
HomeNewsMartinez Boy, 7, Comes to School with Bruises; Mom Jailed

Martinez Boy, 7, Comes to School with Bruises; Mom Jailed


A young mother in Martinez has been arrested for child cruelty after her 7-year-old son showed up at an elementary school in Columbia County this week with bruises.

Ashley Benton-Harold, 23, was charged Tuesday with cruelty to children – causing excessive physical or mental pain.

According to a Columbia County sheriff’s report, the boy’s teacher noticed a mark on his face once he came to class Tuesday. The child was taken to school nurse Sheila Weathersbee, who observed multiple bruises on the child.

The school notified the Department of Family and Children Services as well as the sheriff’s office. Investigators went to the boy’s home, where his mother was interviewed and arrested.

The mother told authorities that she had struck her child with a belt for misbehaving, sheriff’s Major Rick Whitaker said.


Previous articleFREDRICK BLOUNT
Greg Rickabaugh
Greg Rickabaugh
Greg Rickabaugh is an award-winning crime reporter in the Augusta-Aiken area with experience writing for The Augusta Chronicle, The Augusta Press and serving as publisher of The Jail Report. Rickabaugh is a 1994 graduate of the University of South Carolina and has appeared on several crime documentaries on the Investigation Discovery channel.


  1. Hey I tore my son’s ass up a few times with a belt. My daddy did it to me and my sisters, didn’t hurt us. I was told by a deputy that corporal punishment (spanking) is permitted In the state of Ga. Tell them to pound sand. Her son my bruse easily, who knows.
    Any other signs of abuse?

  2. So if we can be arrested for diasaplining our children then what the hell do police get when they beat the hell out of us? Who do we call? This is a bunch of bs. When the tazzing,shooting,and beating people perfusely they get a Medal of Honor but when a parent disciplines there child it called child abuse. What’s going on in this world? 911 should be 191 because you’ll have better luck playing a cash 3 number than calling them lol

  3. leaving brusies is not normal punishment! There is a striking zone, allowed for this type of thing and trust me the FACE is not one of them!! Im sure this is a normal thing she does, this is just the 1st time she was caught!! Way to go CCBOE!

  4. Many people were “disciplined” back in the day with more than just a quick pop on the backside with a hand or sent to their room. I was one of them.That doesn’t mean that it was ok then nor is it ok now. Striking a young child with an object like an extension cord, belt, tree branch, etc., and even at the level to leave an injury, is unacceptable. You can make excuses like it didn’t make you a bad person, you have the right to correct your child the way you see fit, etc. but the reality is that it is a physical way to teach your children that they should fear you, that you are in control and they deserve to be in pain. What is happening is that people are not trying to be a proper parent. Many parents are also not teaching their children right from wrong, to have manners, to address their elders with respect, etc. Many let them get away with all sorts of behaviors that need to be corrected/punished but the alternative isn’t the other extreme which is a beating. Furthermore, how often do you see parents out in the stores on the cell phones, talking away about their date last night or where they’re partying tonight, while their children are expected to drag along? Heaven forbid a child is out during what should be nap time and if he or she gets a little upset, the parent then beats the kid? I’ve seen it happen and I was sickened, and yes, I did report it to the manager. And we wonder why there are so many teen pregnancies, high school dropouts, and young criminals. Is it that they should have been whipped a few more times? Not hardly.

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