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Mother accused of abuse pled guilty last year
Boy's father also arrested
Phillip Waller
Phillip Wesley Waller, the boy's father, has been arrested by Effingham County sheriff's deputies for cruelty in the first degree and cruelty in the second degree.

An Effingham County woman accused of hurting her 10-month-old baby has done so before, according to police and court records.

Tina Marie Richards, 19, remains in the Effingham County Jail facing several charges of child abuse and cruelty after her son, Aiden Waller, had to be airlifted to Memorial Health University Medical Center in Savannah.

Memorial officials do not release information on patients under 18.

The boy’s father, Phillip Wesley Waller, 20, was arrested Monday afternoon by Effingham sheriff’s deputies for cruelty in the first degree and cruelty in the second degree.

Last July, Richards was reported to the authorities after the baby’s grandmother, Kimberly Sue Kellam, went to pick up the boy and discovered he had a black eye. According to an Effingham County Sheriff’s Department report, Richards told Kellam the black eye was the result of a bug bite.

Kellam also told deputies that the baby became sick when she brought him home and after she changed his clothes, she saw bruises on his arms.

Kellam, who lives in Ellabell, called Bryan County deputies, who told her to call Effingham County authorities. The baby was eventually taken to Effingham Hospital.

Richards was indicted by the Effingham County grand jury for one count of cruelty to children and one count of battery in September. According to the indictment, Richards caused “cruel physical pain by inflicting bruises to the arms, face and body” of her child and grabbed him by the arms and threw him into a crib.

Richards pled guilty on both counts and was given five years probation under first offender status.

Richards is being charged with aggravated assault, aggravated battery, cruelty to a child in the first degree and cruelty to a child in the second degree for the incident last week.

After a search warrant was obtained, sheriff’s investigators found a onesy sewn into a crib sheet and yarn and thread apparently sewn to restrain a child’s feet. They also found duct tape which may have been placed over the baby’s mouth. The duct tape has been sent to the state crime lab to see if it contains bodily fluids.

The sheriff’s department is still investigating the incident.