Police in Arkansas arrested a man for piercing his son’s ear last week. Now, he faces felony charges.
The incident was caught on video that went viral on TikTok.
In the clip, four members of the Tontitown Police Department can be seen pushing their way into a home and forcing Jeremy Sherland, 45, against the wall as the man’s wife and son react with shock.
The man stands in front of his doorway, holding onto his door with one hand and the door frame with another as an officer shoves him, grabs his right bicep, and forces his way inside, the footage shows. The homeowner appears to ask why he should submit to officers’ commands and one of them tells him: “Because I said.”
Almost instantly, the officers have numbers, enter the home, and the man is pressed up against the foyer wall.
As Sherland is being handcuffed, his wife demands to know the charges against her husband. An officer replies and Sherland himself throws his head back with a combination of laughter and disdain.
@iamnugget770 #freemyboy #fyp #copabuse #viral ♬ original sound – Zethen Sherland198
“Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha,” he shouts – eleven times total – faking the sound of laughter in a sarcastic fashion as an officer references the ear piercing. “Body art without a license!”
The officers then shove the man outside and march him toward a distant law enforcement vehicle.
“Body art without a license!” Sherland shouts again as he is led away.
As the video continues, the man can be heard registering his disbelief at the charges again, by continuing to feign laughter.
“Piercing his son’s ear without a license,” the man’s wife can be heard yelling offscreen. “It takes three cops, four cops, coming into my house with no permission. No permission and busted in my front door. This is the boy, right here, he got a pierced ear by his dad. These cops busted in my door. Busted in the front door.”
Sherland’s son interjects while filming: “I wanted my ears pierced.”
The incident occurred on Thursday, April 20. Sherland was released on $1,500 bond on Saturday evening. His arraignment is scheduled for May 22, reports say.
According to a press release issued by the Tontitown Police Department, officers claimed they were contacted by a Springdale Police School Resource Officer about the boy’s piercing.
“While sitting in class talking with other students and a teacher present, the juvenile male stated his dad was drunk and put him in a choke hold and shoved the piercing in his ear,” the TPD said.
Sherland’s son says that’s not true.
“Nah, I asked for it and so we just took ice and a potato and did it that way,” Zethen Sherland told Arkansas NBC affiliate KNWA on Monday. “I got my ears pierced nearly a year ago and I wanted it and thought it would be cool.”
According to the TPD, the arrest came the second time officers were at Sherland’s home that day.
“Officers explained the reason for their presents [sic] and asked Jeremy about the incident,” the press release says. “Jeremy admitted to piercing his son’s ear. Officers attempted to investigate the alleged crime further, but Jeremy refused to allow officers to speak with his son and refused to answer questions.”
After that, police say, they went to Washington County Prosecuting Attorney Matt Durrett’s office and obtained a warrant.
Under the Natural State statute cited by law enforcement, it is unlawful to perform body art on a minor without parental consent. The statute also expressly does not apply to minors “when piercing the earlobe.” The statute does, however, make it “unlawful to perform body art in any unlicensed facility.”
Law&Crime reached out to the DA’s office for comment on this story but no response was immediately forthcoming.
“Officers told Jeremy he was under arrest and explained the probable cause for the arrest,” the TPD’s press release says. “Jeremy refused to comply. Officers then took him into custody.”
In addition to the body piercing offense, Sherland was charged with one count each of endangering the welfare of a minor, refusing to submit to arrest, and obstructing governmental operations.
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Jeremy Sherland laughs at police over ear-piercing arrest
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