A Virginia father who shot video of himself boxing his 17-year-old son and posted it on social media is facing charges in the case, and FOX 5 has learned the boy has been removed from his father’s house amid the investigation. Tavis Sellers told FOX 5 he was disciplining his child while also teaching him how to defend himself, but many questioned whether what he did was discipline or abuse.
Sellers identifies himself as TaDigs Ditches on Facebook, where he first posted the video. Sellers says his son was being disciplined because he left class at school. “He can walk out of class, but call me so I’m on your side,” he says to the camera. “All day went by, he didn’t call. So now it’s discipline time because he didn’t do what I told him to do. He chooses to do what he wants to do.”
He then turns the camera to show him boxing with his son. Sellers told FOX 5 his family is a “boxing family,” and it is “no one’s place to judge how he takes care of his business in his house.” In the video, he can be heard scolding his son about his behavior while throwing punches.
After the boxing ends, the video shows Sellers’ son wiping blood from his face. “Let them know! Tell your teacher you’re sorry,” his father tells him. According to Sellers, he busted his son’s lip and gave him a bloody nose, but his injuries weren’t long-lasting.
The caption Sellers posted with the video on Facebook reads, “Blessings come in all forms and mines came in the form of a great young man to have as a son. I feel I would be the worst disappointment to him if I didn’t do my best to deter him from choices in life that I have seen lead to destruction. The world now has given us platforms to reach out and show your efforts. A lot of people were hurt by this video. And that was not the purpose. I did it to show what has been working for ME.”
On Friday afternoon, FOX 5 reporter Alexandra Limon reported Sellers’ son has been removed from this father’s house while the investigation continues.
Sellers turned himself in to police in Prince William County early Friday morning. He faces charges including domestic assault and battery. He was released from jail Friday on $5,000 unsecured bond. On Thursday night, Sellers told FOX 5 if given the chance to give his opinion, his son would say he didn’t want him to be punished for making the video.