Etsy sued after teething necklace purchased on site strangles young child

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SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. — A grieving California mother is taking the popular online retailer Etsy to court because she says a necklace she bought on the site strangled her son and killed him.

Danielle Morin’s said she is sharing the story of what happened to her son Deacon to prevent this from happening to other parents.

On December 10, 2016 someone found the little boy dead at his childcare center –he was strangled to death after the Baltic amber teething necklace he was wearing tightened around his neck and didn’t release.

A close friend had given the necklace to his mother as a gift. That friend bought it on Etsy.

“Baby necklaces, if you use a baby necklace should have a releasing safety clasp so if there’s any pulling on it, it releases,” Morin’s attorney John Carpenter said. “This one that was purchased on had a screw on clasp that could not be released. And so when baby Deacon was hung up on something, it didn’t release and caused him to suffocate.”

Carpenter added that Etsy is legally liable for Deacon’s death-and filed a lawsuit against Etsy and the Lithuanian company that provided the necklace.

The terms of use listed on Etsy’s website says, in part, “The items in our marketplaces are produced, listed, and sold directly by independent sellers, so Etsy cannot and does not make any warranties about their quality, safety, or even their legality. Any legal claim related to an item you purchase must be brought directly against the seller of the item. You release Etsy from any claims related to items sold through our Services.”

Carpenter argues Deacon’s mother didn’t agree to these legal disclosures because she received the necklace as a gift.

“I want parents to know there is no more Toys R Us and people need to go online to buy products and these products are dangerous and these products aren’t always safe,” Morin said. “No parent should have to grieve a child. No parent should have to bury their child.”

In a statement to the reporter, Etsy said it cannot comment on active litigation.

In December 2018, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a very important warning about the safety risks of teething necklaces and bracelets. The FDA said parents, caregivers and health care providers should not use the jewelry to relieve teething pain in children or to provide sensory stimulation to persons with special needs, such as autism or attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

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