Marine couple charged for alleged abuse of infant boy
JACKSONVILLE, ONSLOW COUNTY – A 7-month-old boy suffered a broken rib, bleeding in the lungs, and injuries to his tongue and eyes, and arrest warrants state his mother, a U.S. Marine, is to blame. A man, also a Marine, was arrested in the case as well.
Delaney Welch, 20, and David Alvarez, 25, were arrested on January first at their home in Jacksonville.
Arrest warrants say Welch assaulted and inflicted serious bodily injury on the child that caused a broken rib and bleeding lungs. Warrants state the boy also had a cut to the underside of his tongue, a burst blood vessel in his eye, and bruising. Arrest warrants for Alvarez say he knowingly caused, encouraged and aided the infant to be abused and neglected. The alleged abuse happened from July through September of 2014. The warrants don’t say where the abuse happened, but the couple’s address is listed as the Brynn Marr Village Apartments in Jacksonville.
There is no word where the infant is now.
Cathy Gneiting is a doctor and counselor. She says even a 7 month old baby can have night terrors after experiencing serious abuse. “I would be more concerned about night terrors, help the baby to feel safe, calm, relaxed, in a safe environment,” said Gneiting. She says there can be contributors that lead to abuse, but the main reason people abuse is stress. “A lot of times people will look at the military as such a stressful situation that you’re abusing your children, and that’s not necessarily true. People are abusing their children because they don’t know how to deal with stress,” said Gneiting.
Both Welch and Alvarez were served warrants and arrested around 5 p.m. on New Year’s Day by Onslow County Sheriff’s deputies. Both were released to the U.S. Marines shortly after being arrested. Welch appeared in Onslow County District Court Friday morning for her first appearance. She is charged with felony Assault Causing Bodily Injury and felony Intentional Child Abuse.
Alvarez is charged with misdemeanor Contributing to the Delinquency of a Juvenile. Our reporter spoke to Alvarez on Friday. When asked if he could talk about what happened, Alvarez replied he should probably not say anything.