You expect to see a lot of things on a sightseeing tour boat. But I’d wager that one sight you wouldn’t expect to see is some jackass throwing his 7-year-old son over the side of one. Or at least I would have wagered that until Sloane Briles came along.
Jim Amormino, a spokesman for the Orange County Sheriff’s Office, told the Los Angeles Times Briles apparently had been drinking when he got into an argument with his girlfriend while on a Sunday harbor cruise with more than 80 other passengers.
Authorities said their argument was witnessed by his two sons from a previous marriage, the 7-year-old and a 6-year-old.
Witnesses said the older boy, visibly upset, was walking behind his father when Briles allegedly struck him several times, then picked him up and threw him overboard. Briles then jumped over the side himself.
The boy was fished out by a passing boater.
When sheriff’s deputies arrived, Briles was combative and resisted arrest, Amormino said.
It’s worth noting that more than one version of the story says that Briles only jumped in after the kid once he was already being saved by other people. Thanks, dad.
Briles was taken into custody on suspicion of child endangerment and for resisting arrest. He was later released after posting bond. The kids, meanwhile, were returned to their mother.
This would normally be where the story ends, but not today.
When Sloane Briles was interviewed by KTLA on Tuesday, he noted that he was “not trying to kill [his son].” Instead, he insists that they “were playing in the shallows.”
In addition, he claimed that he and his son discussed together prior to the boat tour that they would jump overboard.
A fine story I suppose, other than the small problem of all the witnesses and his helpful girlfriend who’s story is the same, but different.
His girlfriend, Jennifer Burrelli, defended his actions in an interview with the
New York Daily News, denying that she and her boyfriend had an argument and said that her boyfriend and his son were only “roughhousing” and that he made a “stupid” judgment to throw him overboard, which is a different story than what Briles is now claiming.
“His sons are his whole life,” she said. “He would never ever do anything to hurt them on purpose. He knows now it could have gone badly. He doesn’t even care about the arrest or his own name. He knows it was stupid.”
That last sentence could likely represent the only bit of absolute truth we should be expecting from this pair.