Zip-Tied 4-Year Old Found Fastened To Baby Gate

    May 6, 2013
    Amanda Crum
    Comments are off for this post.

The parents of a 4-year old North Carolina girl have been arrested and charged with felony child abuse after she was found tied to a baby gate and physically abused.

26-year old Gerald Thomas Swineheart and 28-year old Marlaine Coffey had their daughter taken into protective custody after she was discovered bound to the gate with plastic zip ties, of the sort electricians use.

Police have not said whether the abuse was ongoing or if this was the first incident, but Swineheart was charged with pushing and kicking the girl until her teeth cut into her lip. His bond is set at $100,000, while Coffey’s is set at $50,000.

  • Joe Bag

    The first problem I saw is that the mother and father had different last names. This is the sort of thing that happens when people don’t marry, then start having kids. They aren’t committed in a marriage so why should they be committed to raising children? I say commit them both to prison for this.

    • Ang B

      Really? Don’t be so quick to judge – some people prefer not to change their name. Happens quite often when a woman has an established career. To make such a sweeping statement is ignorant. Many unmarried parents do a phenomenal job of raising their children.

    • Theresa

      Committed relationship has nothing to do with it- apparently all of the child abuse cases between married folk are just “misunderstandings: then huh? Come back when you can formulate an intelligent comment. Wait, no I am not here to bash you but will have to say that while entitled to your opinion- how do you explain the thousands of married parents that are in jails nationwide for abusing their children, raping their children and killing their children? I for one would like to see them both at the burning end of a cattle iron with the word dumbass emblazed and stamped right onto their foreheads for the world to see- at least we would know where they are and who to watch out for.

  • Ughhh

    ^ to joe “d” bag… what does that have to do with abuse of this innocent child first of all, pisses me off how you don’t address THIS SICK SITUATION but some stupid thing about two people not married! Second of all these despicable people deserve to have ass whoopings EVERY SINGLE DAY OF THEIR LIVES for a loonnng time. JAIL IS NOT FIT PUNISHMENT FOR THESE TYPES OF CRIMES!! What this child went through…breaks my heart.

    • donna chavez

      I agree ,thay put them in jail and give them 3 meals a day ac,and tv free medical ,thay need to tie them to a dam fence post and kick them in the teeth all dam day long.i dont like voilance but when you do this to a helpless child you deserve 100% what you have inflicked on a child.i am so pissed off right now.

  • Vanessa

    Every time I hear about something like this it angers me more than anything when the female (she doesn’t deserve to be called a mother or a woman) gets a lesser bond. As far as I’m concerned she is just as criminally responsible and deserves to be treated the same. There’s no justice on this earth.

    • Barbara

      Vanessa I agree. These females do not deserve to be called “Mother” they are just egg donors as far as I’m concerned and I feel that they should have a much harsher punishment than what they are getting. If animals have enough sense to kill to protect their young then why are humans doing less? Makes no sense.

    • donna chavez

      i agree ,that mother is no better than dirt on the bottom of my shoes .and that putting it mildly.as a mother i would have shanked that mother ……..er.

  • Joyce

    They are neither A MOTHER or A FATHER they are just a egg donor and a sperm donor, you have got to have a heart and parent emotions to be called a parent. MAY THEY GET THE PUNISHMENT THAT THEY DESERVE. And may the little girl finely get the love and care she deserves. My heart goes out to her.

  • Hewitt Jones

    Authorities should already be interviewing MARRIED couples of 4+ years
    to adopt this endangered child. The egg and sperm donors should never
    this innocent four year child ever again. They should also be required
    to permanently have a vasectomy and tubes tied!

  • Montgomery Hellgates

    He has the heart of a swine.

  • Disgusted

    WHY is the mother getting the lesser bond amount?? She ALLOWED any and all of this to happen, she is JUST AS GUILTY as him. Swineheart..exactly what they are, PIGS.

  • Buzzby

    These two are disgusting. No child should ever be treated this way. My heart goes out to that poor girl. I hope she gets the love and support she needs to overcome this horror.

  • W. Morris

    At what point will child protective services be making unannounced visits to every home in the country? This stuff shows up every day in the news.

    • pantherbaby23

      Yes that may be true but sometimes other people have to step in and help with the situation. If they feel it is necessary that is what they will do. I don’t know about you but I would be scared to let them have her back in their custody.

  • pantherbaby23

    What these two individuals did is discusting. This little 4 year old did not ask to be brought into this world. So why should she have to deal with her parents being idiots and stupid. This little girl probably didn’t even understand what she did to deserve what she got. I really hope the child finds someone who will take good care of her, and I hope her parents get the max sentence. Although I think even if they spend time in jail the worst thing would be their daughter being permently taken from them would be worse.

    • B

      One thing about it, is they go to jail and the other inmates know what they did, They WILL suffer.

      • charity

        really ive been to jail for other ordeals and for the woman side people just talk and ignore them no real harm done so they dont get what they deserve in jail maybe they should though

  • Suzanne

    We have been foster parents in 3 States due to military commitment. I know that the CPS will work with the parents so the child will be returned to them. This is SO wrong and I wish the authorities would see that these children are put up for adoption. Two little boys we had in PA were taken away from their parents, returned just to be taken away again when the father took off and the mother was stoned when the caseworker arrived. Why do they try to reunite abusive parents with the children when there are so many people who want children?! Stupid!!!!!!!!

  • Sindy

    I just can’t imagine how some people are so cruel. When pregnant you have to prepare yourself to care for a child. When children are unwanted this is what happens. My heart is with that poor girl that had monsters as parents.

  • Debbie

    This is just a terrible act! How about we zip tie those two asses to a gate and kick them in the mouth till they die! This is disgusting how someone could get away with this. CPS get tougher on these creeps! Random visits all the time, That poor baby, my heart aches for her and her little heart. Please God protect her and find her a loving home :)

  • Sharyl

    Even pigs take better care of their young ones. These people need someone to treat them the same way and of course they should never get the child back. If they can do this to a little 4 year old they can do this to anyone and anything. So sad, I am so glad they got caught. There is hope for the little sweetheart.

  • Tlo

    Some people just shouldn’t be allowed to reproduce. I’d like to zip tie these POS over an alligator tank

  • SAmantha

    REALLY this poor child some one has issues if they would ever hurt a child. This is horrible if you are having children and it come to the point u want to hit or abuse them please call some one don’t put these babies through this!!!!

  • Boston Girl

    Please stop equating these scum with swine. Pigs are animals that serve a purpose. Whether it be as a pet or food source, they are noble creatures. I am a city girl & don’t own one, but I love bacon, ribs, & pork chops. So stop defaming our swine!! These scum need to do HARD time. That unfortunate child needs someone who will love & cherish her. She is in my prayers.

  • Tiana

    This makes me want to find the people who did this to the child, and kick there asses myself! How could could you hurt a child like that, it just pisses me off!

  • sharon

    I don’t think it matters if your married or not abuse is abuse no matter how you look at it. they should be strung up and never aloud to have another nore should they ever be aloud to adopt eighter no pets no children then maybe child abuse might go down just a little and any one found on child abuse she have this law no matter what! I know just my thoughts!

  • http://yahoo mike

    the way i see it this.if it were up to me and i wish it were.they would be horse whipped and beaten to within an inch of their lives.treated by a doctor and then do it again and again.i for one can not under any terms tolerate child abuse and any adult that can does not deserve to breathe the same air as the rest of us.and anyone that does not like what i posted can kiss my white redneck butt….

  • Leslis

    is zip ties were recommended with the gates, they would have been included in the box. So people don’t deserve to be parents.

    • http://yahoo.com Cindy kennedy

      I agree with you. Parents don’t realize that they are hurting their children’s future when they do that kind of thing

    • http://yahoo.com Cindy kennedy

      I agree with you. Parents don’t realize that they are hurting their children’s future when they do that kind of thing

  • donna chavez


  • http://httmwoodsnews.com eric volpe

    Just because you can make a baby does not mean you should have a child! Our society has gone so far from one end to another, Now my father beat me when I was a child “not all the time ” so I know what it feels like to be on the receiving end. There is no reason that should be acceptable for having the wind kicked out of you at the age of 8 but then again parents have been stripped of their parenting powers ,Sorry I don’t believe in time outs and stern talkings to sometime a child needs a swat on the butt to get a point across. If you’re child dose not have a healthy fear “key word being healthy” they will not respect you. Balance is the key here and the state needs to stop implementing rules that stop parents from being parents! Agree with me or not you cannot deny that when parents had the right to truly disapline their children kids had a much better social repore with the community! Parents we need to take back our rights to raise our children correctly .When a child has unexplained bruises and welts then the cps should be notified as in the case of this little girl ,I hope they throw the book at the parents!

  • Teri

    This is where, that type of abusive person married to each other or not, should be sterilized. No more children for them and also make it impossible for them to adopt!!!

  • http://yahoo Warren

    They should both be sterilized, without sedation! Believe me, a day will come when they stand in judgement in front of God Almighty and he will say “You did WHAT???!” and they will be judged accordingly.

  • http://4yearoldtiedtogate Annalee

    WTF!!! I can’t believe the parent’s did that. What they couldn’t find someone there own size to mess with they had to pick on a lil baby! I’m a mother of 2 boys 12 & 5. I would never do that to my kid’s even if they were acting like wild beasties. I hope they get to go to prison and someone teaches them whats up. Some people should never ever have kid’s.