Rebecca Bredow, 40, of Ferndale, spent five days in jail for refusing a court order to vaccinate her nine-year-old son
A mother from Michigan who was jailed for five days after refusing to vaccinate her son says she's 'outraged' and 'devastated' to find out her son has been fully immunized while she was in prison.
Rebecca Bredow, 40, was ordered by Oakland County Circuit Court to vaccinate her nine-year-old boy at the request of the boy's biological father, James Horne.
But when Bredow did not ensure the child received the shots, despite agreeing to do so during a November 2016 court case, Judge Karen McDonald her to be in contempt of court and sentenced her to a week in the Oakland County Jail.
In her absence, the boy's father saw to it that his son was given the injections.
'It was the worst five days of my life, except for the fact that I just found out that he was vaccinated and I'm not going to get him back today,' Bredow said to the Detroit Free Press. 'It's been a rough few days to say the least.'
'I was trying to protect my kids,' she said to ABC News on Friday morning. 'I was trying to stand up for what I believed in, and it was worth it for me to try and take the risk, because I was trying to stop the vaccinations from happening.'
'Never in a million years did I ever think that I would end up in jail standing up to try to protect my kids, and standing up for my beliefs,' Bredow added.
She said her time in jail 'was the longest five days of my life.'
Bredow objected to the injections on religious grounds but the boy's father wanted the boy immunized. A judge also ordered parents to split custody of the child 50/50
Bredow spent a week in jail after being found in contempt of court for not immunizing her son, who she is pictured with, despite signing a legal document in court stating she would do so
Bredow, who is from suburban Detroit, agreed to immunize her son last November during a custody battle with her husband, however, she went back on that agreement and was jailed
She will also have to share custody of the child with the boy's father on a 50/50 basis.
'She's devastated,' Bredow's attorney Steven Vitale said adding that he and his client have been given three weeks to challenge the new ruling.
'I think it's horrific; to me it's a worst case scenario,' he said, to CBS Detroit. 'For a mother who has done and followed all of the state exemption laws, never had her voice truly heard in this court…I think it's absolutely horrible.'
Bredow had said earlier that she takes 'full responsibility' for not following court orders, saying that vaccinations go against her religious beliefs and that she should have made her objections to them sooner.
'I'm a passionate mother who cares deeply about my children, their health, and their well-being,' she said.
'If my child was forced to be vaccinated, I couldn't bring myself to do it.'
Michigan is one of 17 states that allows for medical, religious, and philosophical exemptions from vaccines.
Rebecca Bredow told reporters that her decision to not vaccinate her child was part of her religious beliefs and she believes it was within her rights as the boy's mother to choose what kind of care he should have.
'I still stand by my choices because I stand up for what I believe in,' Bredow added.
Bredow said she takes 'full responsibility' for not following court orders, saying that vaccinations go against her beliefs and that she should have made her objections to them clearer sooner. Her nine-year-old son, who is not named, is pictured
Bredow claims that she and her ex-husband initially decided to complete the shots over a period of time, but that she later decided to go against that decision without talking to him.
In the state of Michigan, schools require students to receive vaccinations before entering Kindergarten and up until 7th grade, while transfer students are required to be administered vaccines into their high school years.
According to Michigan.gov, the vaccines include: Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis, Polio, Measles, Measles, Mumps, Rubella, Hepatitis B, Meningococcal Conjugate and Varicella (Chicken Pox).
However, Bredow said she was permitted to delay her son's shots for personal, medical or religious reasons.
While the family had the option to wait, the child's father showed concerned about their son's well-being and took the matter to court when he lost power.
Bredow was handcuffed and booked into jail for a week after refusing to take her nine-year-old son to be vaccinated, despite agreeing to do so in a custody battle with her son's father