An Oregon Mother Was Just Sentenced To 30 Days In Jail After ‘Waterboarding’ Her Infant Son

Published September 19, 2023
Updated September 20, 2023

After she was arrested, Sharday McDonald said she hadn't intended to harm the child when she poured water over his face.

Sharday Mcdonald Mugshot

Multnomah County Sheriff’s OfficeSharday McDonald was sentenced to 30 days in jail for the mistreatment of her child as well as witness tampering and identity theft.

A mother in Oregon was sentenced to 30 days in jail for waterboarding her 13-month-old son and putting him in the freezer.

30-year-old Sharday McDonald said she did it to test the baby’s father, Kendrick Neal, to see if he “gave a f— at all,” according to an affidavit obtained by Inside Edition.

McDonald pleaded guilty to criminal mistreatment and unrelated charges of witness tampering and ID theft.

Police responded to a home in Gresham, Oregon, in October 2021 for a welfare check after a report of a mom putting a baby in the freezer. When officers arrived, they heard McDonald shouting on the phone through the door.

“You don’t want him. Let me show you this little f—ing baby,” McDonald said, according to the officer.

When she answered the door, she was holding the baby wrapped in a blanket.

At some point during the welfare check, Neal arrived and shared screen grabs from a video call with McDonald with officers. In the images, McDonald held the baby by his onesie while holding him under running water.

One image showed McDonald holding the baby by his onesie at a downward angle “where his hip, legs, and feet were higher than his head… with water running over his face. The only place the water could go was in his nose.”

The officers then placed McDonald under arrest. McDonald said she was sorry and that she had not been trying to hurt or kill her baby. She claimed she thought putting the baby under running water would get Neal to come over to her place, and she did it “out of spite.”

Gresham Police Badge

Gresham Police DepartmentPolice in Gresham, Oregon, responded to a report of a woman putting a baby into a freezer.

McDonald will serve 30 days in the Multnomah County Detention Center. It is unclear where the child is and what condition he is in.

In Oregon, criminal mistreatment is a Class C felony with a maximum sentence of five years or 90 days plus probation if there are no prior convictions.

Sadly, this is not the first time a parent has been caught waterboarding her own child. In 2019, 33-year-old Caitlyn Alyse Hardy was charged with child cruelty after filming herself pouring water on her sleeping baby’s face and posting it to Facebook.

“Payback for waking me up all kinda times of da night,” Hardy’s post read, with several laughing emojis. The video showed the nine-month-old baby waking up coughing after Hardy poured a water bottle on her face.

Authorities in South Carolina arrested Hardy after an arrest warrant was issued that said her actions showed “ill-treatment” that caused “unnecessary pain and suffering” for the baby, according to the Daily Mail.

In 2018, the father and stepmother of a nine-year-old girl were arrested and charged with child abuse for tying up and waterboarding the girl.

Joseph and Ilaria Mitchell reportedly tied the girl’s hands behind her back, held her down in a bathtub, and poured water over her on at least three separate occasions.

“She’s nine, nine years old. That is torture of a child,” the girl’s biological mother, Brittany Calabrese, said, according to WKRC.


After reading the disturbing story of a mother waterboarding her child, read about these five acts of child abuse that used to be completely legal. Or, read about the mother who kept her 13 children captive for years.

author
Hannah Reilly Holtz
author
Hannah Reilly is an editorial fellow with All That's Interesting. She holds a B.A. in journalism from Texas Tech University and was named a Texas Press Association Scholar. Previously, she has worked for KCBD NewsChannel 11 and at Texas Tech University as a multimedia specialist.
editor
Matt Crabtree
editor
Matt Crabtree is an assistant editor at All That's Interesting. A writer and editor based in Salt Lake City, Utah, Matt has a Bachelor's degree in journalism from Utah State University and a passion for idiosyncratic news and stories that offer unique perspectives on the world, film, politics, and more.
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Holtz, Hannah. "An Oregon Mother Was Just Sentenced To 30 Days In Jail After ‘Waterboarding’ Her Infant Son." AllThatsInteresting.com, September 19, 2023, https://allthatsinteresting.com/sharday-mcdonald. Accessed June 15, 2024.