Man Arrested For Hitting Young Son, Holding Head Underwater

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A Springdale man faces a felony battery charge after police said he repeatedly struck a young boy and then held his head underwater Saturday night.

Shane Spears, 28, was booked into the Washington County Detention Center on Sunday morning and has a bond of $10,000 for second-degree battery and second-degree endangering the welfare of a minor, according to the Sheriff’s Department website. Spears has a Feb. 27 court date for those charges.

A preliminary police report said officers responded to an abuse and assault call at approximately 7:10 p.m. Saturday at a hotel on South Thompson Street in Springdale. The report said the officers met a woman, Shelli Whaler, who was with her two children, aged 4 and 3.

Whaler told officers she went to a room at the inn to pick up her children, a boy and a girl whose names were redacted, from Spears, who had watched the children for about a week, the report said. Whaler told officers Spears wanted to keep the children another day but she noticed her son was bruised and covered with welts on his face and back down to his knees, the report said.

The boy — it’s unclear if he is the 3 year old or the 4 year old — said his dad hit him on his face and backside and that he “hurt everywhere,” the report said. The boy told police his dad pushed his head underwater and he couldn’t breathe, the report said.

The girl told officers she saw Spears hit the boy “a lot” and hold the boy’s head underwater, the report said. She said the boy was struggling while he was being held underwater, the report said.

According to the preliminary report, Spears has a criminal history that includes burglary and the delivery and manufacture of drugs.