As an aspiring lawyer, I’m ashamed to admit that I’m not sure what the crime is for pretending to try and give your kids away online…for free. Still, I’m pretty sure I can come up with something.

Some fool in Southern California posted his 5-year-old son on Craigslist this morning. I’m not sure which I find more surprising – the fact that he knew how to use a computer or the fact that he was giving him away for free. I imagine 5-year-olds are worth their weight in gold these days. Nonetheless, this blatant misuse of the online sales forum didn’t go unnoticed. CNN reports that at least on person notified the police department, where the Computer Crimes unit managed to track down ErBay McBrainless.

The poster admitted that he posted the information and that it was a joke. He actually had no intentions of giving his son away for free…because he didn’t actually have access to his son. At all. Surprise! Turns out the kid was living with his mom in what CNN calls “a safe environment.” I’m not sure what kind of padded room that is, but needless to say, it seems unlikely that the abuse allegations will stick. Seems dad’s just plain old crazy.

Following the fruitful Q&A, another post popped up from the prospective of the boy (maybe giving himself away for free?) saying he was being abused by his mother. Both posts were removed by Craigslist. If not reckless endangerment of a child, at the very least this guy should go away for fraud – I mean…if he never intended to give away that kid, I don’t know what I’m gonna do with the baby carriage and box set of Dora the Explorer.

Fortunately for him, he’s not the only feller trying to give away kids on Craigslist today. Turns out another ad surfaced, also in Southern California, for another free baby boy. Red tape, move on over…

According to Fox 6 in San Diego, the posting read: “Free baby boy to a good home. My ex-girlfriend had him a few weeks ago, but now he just sits in my closet and cries. I’m not sure how to deal with it, and I’m in a pretty low financial spot. I lost all the baby accessories. Batteries not included. Transaction final. No returns. Guarenteed [sic] not DOA”

Well…it is guaranteed not to be dead on arrival…if that’s not something I don’t know what is. That batteries not included joke is funny too…or maybe not…who knows what this weirdo is hooking his children up to at home. One news page notes that the police are “trying to trace the ad to determine whether the offer is genuine or a hoax.” Here’s hoping.

Here’s an idea – if it turns out to be serious, they should post an ad on Craigslist asking for soccer moms to come over to his place and take turns beating him with a shovel. Nothing screams deterrence like a blunt-instrument wielding mother of four.

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