Mom in tainted tongue depressor case told to stay off social media
Cori Ward, 30, was allowed to go free Friday after a relative posted her bond
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A Jacksonville mother has been ordered to stay off social media after a viral video surfaced showing her 10-year-old daughter lick a tongue depressor at a local clinic and put it back in the jar.
On Friday, Cori Ward went before a judge for the first time since her arrest Thursday on a felony charge of tampering with a consumer product without regard for possible death or bodily injury.
Ward, 30, could be sentenced up to 30 years in prison and fined $10,000 if convicted.
The judge ruled Ward could go free while she awaits trial so long as she avoids social media and does not have any contact with the All About Kids & Families Medical Center, where the video was filmed.
Ward was released Friday after her father posted $25,000 bond. Walking out of jail, the family declined comment to a News4Jax crew.
The video was filmed Tuesday at the clinic after what Ward described as a long wait in the examination room. It was uploaded to her Snapchat with the following caption: "Don't tell me how to live my life."
Later, someone else recorded a copy of the clip and shared it on "Only in Duval," a popular Facebook group where locals share the antics and exploits that seem to be characteristic of Jacksonville.
But after the video went viral, the clinic's administration called for a full police investigation. That investigation led to Ward's arrest, who insisted she was "just being silly" with her children.
Since then, the medical center noted, the tainted materials have been removed.
“It’s ruined my life right now," Ward told News4Jax previously. "That’s how I feel at least."
The video follows a series of similar incidents across the country, which appear to have been inspired by a teen caught on camera licking the top of an ice cream tub before placing it back inside a store freezer.
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