Dad Who Hurled Son Into Harbor Sentenced to Rehab
Sloan Briles dove in, too—to escape furious passengers
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser User
Posted Jan 10, 2012 12:28 AM CST
Sloan Briles said he and his son were just horsing around. "I was not trying to kill my son," he said after his arrest.   (alabamastormspotters)

(Newser) – A drunk ex-Marine who hurled his 7-year-old son into a busy harbor during a California sightseeing cruise has been sentenced to 180 days in a residential treatment facility for alcoholism. Sloan Briles, 35, who pleaded guilty to felony child abuse, will also have to attend a year of child abuse treatment and will serve three years probation. Prosecutors had sought jail time, and he faced a possible six years behind bars. Briles was on the cruise with his girlfriend and two young sons when he poked and repeatedly slapped one of his boys in the face. When the boy cried and told his dad to stop hurting him, Briles hoisted his son up over the ship rail and heaved him into Orange County's busy Newport Harbor, reports the Los Angeles Times.

"There were lots of other boats in the water," said a spokeswoman for the district attorney. The vessel maneuvered to try to block other boats from hitting the boy, and one craft had to veer sharply to avoid striking him. The cruise's pilot tossed him a life-saving ring while another boat fished him out. Briles, who was drunk at the time, leaped into the water to escape furious passengers, reports the Orange County Register. He said after his arrest that he and his son were just horsing around.