California mom attacked child in attempted exorcism

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Felder, meanwhile, was booked at the Humboldt County Correctional Facility on suspicion of attempted homicide, assault with a deadly weapon, felony child abuse, and aggravated mayhem.

The Sacramento Bee has the most detailed report we could find of this weird and tragic incident that took place on a secluded beach near Ferndale, in Humboldt County.

A Northern California woman has been arrested for allegedly beating, biting, and choking her daughter while trying to perform an exorcism.

The caller stated that Felder had stripped her daughter naked and was shoving handfuls of sand down her throat.

As Felder viciously hit, bit and choked the girl, Honsal said, a crowd of 10 to 12 people arrived and saw the incident. Marciel went on to tell the Associated Press that Felder had questioned him about his faith. Almost a dozen people watched the alleged attack - and one man stepped in to help.

A local resident named John Marciel tried to stop Felder and someone eventually called 9-1-1 at approximately 9 a.m. on Friday.

Marciel struggled with Felder, while Felder continued to hit the child in the head with a piece of driftwood. According to police the mother stated "she was trying to remove the demons from the child".

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Authorities said if it were not for Marciel's heroism and swift actions, the girl could have been killed.

He added: "When you see something like this, it shakes your foundation and faith in people".

Police said that Felder was tested for drugs upon being arrested, but have not announced the results of the test.

"John Marciel further assisted by tending to the child while deputies controlled Felder", the sheriff's office said.

Marciel is being recommended to be recognized with the Red Cross Life Saving Award for his assistance.

EMTs arrived as well and took the child to a hospital where she was treated for mutliple injuries including severe damage to her right ear.

In a press release, the Humboldt County Sheriff's Office hailed a Good Samaritan who tried to stop the exorcism.