DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (WESH) – A man accused of throwing his 5-year-old son into the ocean has posted bond and was released from jail Tuesday.
That man reportedly left the child alone in the water as he repeatedly dove from a Daytona Beach pier.
WESH 2 News spoke with one witness, who says he raced to help the little boy.
It’s illegal to jump off the Main Street Pier in Daytona Beach, but that is what witnesses say John Bloodsworth was doing Monday night, while his child was struggling to swim in a deep part of the ocean near the pier.
“I said, ‘I can’t take this no more.’ So I went down to the pier, down to the shore and confronted him myself,” witness Mitch Brown said.
Brown is a former Georgia State Trooper. He’s on vacation in Daytona Beach with his family.
Brown says they were having dinner on the Main Street Pier Monday night when he and his family noticed a child trying to bob above the waves on the side of the pier.
“The little kid was out here by himself. Completely by himself. There was nobody around him, no adults,” Brown said.
Brown said other people were watching as Bloodsworth would tumble from the pier, swim past his child, and throw him into the waves while yelling at him to learn to swim.
Fed up, the former trooper decided to confront the man.
“I said, ‘you’re coming with me, one way or another,'” Brown said.
Brown brought Bloodsworth to a Daytona Beach police officer, who later arrested him.
According to a Volusia County Beach Safety report, Bloodsworth claimed he was trying to teach his son to swim.
The officer who arrested him says the father was clearly intoxicated.
“The kid was already very visibly upset and crying, and he didn’t want to be there,” Brown said.
The father is now facing a child abuse charge and a charge for disorderly intoxication in public.
While at Volusia County Beach Safety headquarters, Bloodsworth allegedly said he was “going to jail for being awesome,” and he would be “coming back to the pier to jump off every day.”