MTV's Teen Mom star Amber Portwood was arrested on Monday and charged with felony domestic battery and child neglect, stemming from her behavior on the reality television series. Portwood, 20, is one of four women the show chronicles as they attempt to manage as young mothers. Last season, Portwood's tumultuous relationship with her on-and-off fiancé took a turn for the worse when she punched him in the face and slapped him multiple times in front of their daughter while cameras rolled. Even though show producers were present, no one intervened, even though you can hear a producer-cameraperson telling her to stop. After MTV aired the show, viewers contacted authorities, who watched the footage and decided to press charges. In November, Portwood agreed to be monitored by child protective services for six months. That same month, state officials charged her with three counts of domestic violence as a result of her actions on Teen Mom, which also included verbal abuse. Last month the state of Indiana began the process of taking Portwood's daughter, Leah, away from her. The child is still in Portwood's custody, however, until a hearing is set. If convicted of the charges, Portwood faces three years in prison and a $10,000 fine. Portwood has subsequently said that she was in a rage and didn't realize she was hitting her fiancé.
Portwood is dead wrong, and if it had been a man hitting his girlfriend like that, he would have been under the jail a lot sooner. Portwood, who is young, might have benefited from the intervention of adult producers and camerapeople stepping in and insisting that she get help with her anger before things escalated to this level. Since ratings rule, common sense did not prevail. We hope that she gets the help that she and other batters, male and female, clearly need. On another note, failure to report the neglect of a child is a criminal offense in Indiana, so we're wondering why no one from the crew is being charged. It was viewers who called the police, not show producers or crew personnel. Is it fair for Portwood to be the only person punished, while the real adults in the room failed to intervene and literally benefited from the episode?
Read more at MTV.com.