A US mother who poured hot sauce into the mouth of her seven-year-old son to punish the adopted Russian boy may face year-long jail sentence after being convicted of child abuse.
The woman showed no emotion when a jury announced its decision in a district court in Anchorage, Alaska, without responding to questions from reporters, CBS News reports.
The 36-year-old mother faces a maximum sentence of one year in jail, a $10,000 fine and up to 10 years of probation when she is sentenced for the misdemeanour of child abuse.
The woman made a videotape of how she punished her son on October 21, 2010, and submitted it to the Dr Phil self-help talk show for a segment titled Mommy Confessions.
The eight-minute video shows her confronting her son about misbehaving in school and lying, and then pouring hot sauce into the crying child’s mouth and not allowing him to spit it out for more than a minute.
The footage also shows the woman forcing the screaming boy into a cold shower before sending him off to bed.
When the episode aired, it sparked public outrage in Russia, witrh demands the boy and his adopted sibling be returned to Russia.
The jury heard that the video wasn’t the woman’s first attempt to get on the Dr Phil show.
She had seen a segment in April 2009 titled Angry Moms and contacted the show but heard nothing for a year-and-a-half.
She then submitted audition videos, but was told they needed to see more than just yelling at the children: They needed to see her actually punishing her son, the court heard.
That’s when the woman got the flip-cam ready, made sure there was enough hot sauce on the shelf in the bathroom and recruited her 10-year-old daughter to shoot the video.
Days later, she was on her way to Los Angeles to be on the show.
The episode aired on November 17, 2010.
JB for GerryMen