Missouri couple accused of putting children inside clothes dryer
On the same day advocates gathered for a candlelight vigil for the victims of child abuse and neglect, a mother and her live-in boyfriend were locked up for allegedly putting two children in a clothes dryer.
The suspects are being held in the Camden County Jail, which is just across the lawn from where the Camden County Child Advocacy Council held a vigil Monday night to recognize April as national Child Abuse Prevention month.
The two victims were allegedly placed inside a clothes dryer after being physically abused. According to reports, the machine was turning when the children were inside. The children have been removed from the home.
Stephen W. Ray Jr., 26, of Linn Creek, was arrested Friday after the incident was reported to the Division of Children’s Services. He is charged with two counts of felony child abuse. He is being held without bond on a probation and parole violation.
Ray allegedly was living with the mother of the children at a home in Linn Creek when children’s services was called to investigate allegations of abuse in the home. DCS staff and two Camden County Sheriff’s Department deputies visited the home April 12 after receiving a hotline call. On Monday, a warrant was issued for the arrest of the mother, 29-year-old Nicole M. Eberhart. She was arrested Monday afternoon at her place of employment. She was charged with two counts of felony child abuse. Bond for Eberhart was set at $100,000.
If convicted, Ray and Eberhart could face up to seven years in prison and/or fines of up to $5,000.
To report suspected child abuse or neglect, please call the Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline at 800-392-3738.
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