Two Pennsylvania teenagers face charges after they let a 2-year-old child in their care use a vaping device, and then posted a video of the incident on social media.
In the footage, which was posted on Snapchat and obtained by NBC affiliate WPXI in Pittsburgh, the toddler inhales from the device and then starts coughing and crying. The two teen girls appear to be are heard in the background laughing.
State police said the incident happened on Thursday, and they identified the people in the video as the child’s 17-year-old babysitter and an 18-year-old girl. Authorities were made aware of the video after receiving a tip.
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The 17-year-old was looking after the toddler at the time at a home in St. Clair Township, about 60 miles east of Pittsburgh.
According to a police press release, the child found the vaping device on a nightstand. The teenagers, instead of retrieving the device, allowed the child to inhale from it as one or both of them videotaped it.
Police said the teens are not related to the child, and the parents of the toddler were unaware of what happened until authorities contacted them.
The mother, who did not want to be identified, told WPXI that she was shocked by the teens’ behavior.
“I’m in disbelief that they would even laugh or have something like that in reach of a child’s possession,” she said. “I’m not trusting nobody anymore to babysit my child.”
Both teens face charges of endangering the welfare of a child, police said.
The device is believed to have contained 3 percent nicotine but not THC, which has been linked to lung illnesses from vaping, police said.