A Pittsburgh mom hired a 17-year-old to babysit her 2-year-old son, trusting that babysitter to protect him in her absence, officials say.
Instead, police say the babysitter exposed the toddler to harmful chemicals from vaping and posted videos of it online.
In a Jan. 9 video shared with KDKA, a babysitter and her friend, who was 18, are seen watching a toddler inhale from a vape pen containing 3% nicotine and laughing as he begins to cough and cry. Faces of the participants were blurred.
The disturbing video was brought to the attention of Pennsylvania State Police on Sunday by an anonymous report through Safe2Say Something, the state’s youth violence prevention program, according to WPXI.
After finding out the identities of the toddler, the babysitter and her friend, authorities alerted the 2-year-old’s parents who were unaware — and shocked — it had happened, CNN reports. They also reported the incident to children and youth services.
The babysitter and her friend are facing criminal charges of endangering the welfare of a child, police told NBC News.
The mother — who wants her child and herself to remain unidentified — says she will likely never trust someone to watch her son again.
“I’m in disbelief that they would even laugh or that they would even have something like that in reach of a child,” she told WPXI. “No child should have that fear of going into someone else’s house and not being protected.”