Little Boy Skips Church, Goes to Dollar Store, Police Arrest His Father for Child Endangerment

Church busFlickrEight-year-old Justin Williamson of Blanchester, Ohio, was supposed to board a church bus taking him and his siblings to service at Woodville Baptist Church. Instead of getting on the bus, Jusitn wandered half a mile from his home and entered a Family Dollar store. Someone at the store notified the authorities.

Police arrested Justin's father and charged him with child endangerment.

WCPO Cincinnati has the full, awful story:

The trouble started when a bus from the Woodville Baptist Church came to pick up 8-year-old Justin and his siblings, Williamson said.

"My kids run in the house in the living room here and tell me, 'Hey, Dad, the church van's here. We're leaving. We're going on to church,' " Williamson said.

"I said, 'OK.' "

Williamson said he didn't know Justin didn't get on the bus.

"He just wanted to go play in the neighborhood," he said.

Once the cops had returned Justin to his home, an officer arrested Williamson over the tearful protests of his children. After a story about the incident ran in a local newspaper, Williamson lost his job.

Over at Free-Range Kids, Reason contributor Lenore Skenazy writes that at least the incident is garnering significant media attention. Situations like this are rare, however, and parents should not be afraid to let their kids roam, she writes:

It is good that these stories of petty minds and police badgering get out to the world, as a way of perhaps, somehow, keeping power in check. But I don’t want you to now fear your own 8-year-old walking to the Dollar Store, or playing in the nabe. These stories are rare and outrageous enough that they MAKE it to the news. I report them here to remind us that there is a power structure we MUST FIGHT that can take away our rights as parents, kids and citizens. But not that any time an 8-year-old goes to buy a $1 squirt gun, he’s going to get his parents arrested. (Unless, of course, he brings that squirt gun to school.)

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  • mashed potatoes||

    Who are these people? Both the customer at the store and the cops? Why would anyone think charges are necessary?

  • ||

    It's an excuse. Maybe the cop was annoyed that day and felt like arresting someone, and this provided him with the opportunity.

  • mashed potatoes||

    It didn't say, but please tell me the hero's in the DA's office declined to charge. I'm a wide eyed optimist.

  • Dweebston||

    Per the article, the gentleman is due in court on July 15th. So apparently the DA is just as much a pusillanimous little shit as the cops were.

  • mashed potatoes||

    Judge hopefully? Sometime needs to stop the stupidity. I think I'm developing a desire for a hero as a safety mechanism. Without it, I might burn the whole fucking thing down.

  • Tonio||

    It will be interesting to see how this plays out.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    Blanchester, Ohio has a population of 4200. You'd think this would be one of those places where neighbors know each other and wouldn't overreact to seeing their neighbor's kid out on his own.

  • trshmnster the terrible||

    The new generation of nosy old ladies of 50 years ago now have CPS on speed dial. It's FOURE DUH CHILLRUNZZ!!!

  • ||

    Like I said above, this sounds more like the cops being bored/angry/whatever.

    It also says to me: don't have kids.

  • Hugh Akston||

    I imagine there are many people who say that to you on a daily basis, Epi.

  • ||

    They used to, Hugh, but I think they got tired of stating the obvious. Ironically, your mom was one of the last to keep saying it.

  • Hugh Akston||

    I only hope for the sake of humanity that your sperm are as lazy as your comebacks.

  • MSimon||

    LSD = Lazy Sperm Disease

  • MegaloMonocle||

    this sounds more like the cops being bored/angry/whatever.

    Goes without saying.

    I'm kinda curious about the asshole at the Family Dollar store who called the cops.

    R C Dean

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    I'm kinda curious about the asshole at the Family Dollar store who called the cops.

    What's there to be curious about? He/She had "good intentions". He or she was "concerned". This person believed that "if you see something, say something".

  • wef||

    He just wanted to go play in the neighborhood - and not go to some superstitious bore-fest with a bunch of religious nutters. Little, non-conformist atheist gets father arrested. See, boys and girls? Look what happens to you if you flout God's Law.

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    So, this story is basically about religious culture wars?

  • wef||

    I don't know nothing about no culture wars. But this story should be read as a sign of divine displeasure. As we read in Mark 10:14, "But when Jesus saw this, He was indignant and said to them, 'Permit the children to come to Me; do not hinder them; for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.'"

  • Acosmist||

    Watch out, we're dealing with an internet badass here.

  • trshmnster the terrible||

    So, pulling from the pedantic arguments a couple weeks ago, is wef and atheist or an anti-religionist? Inquiring minds must know so that we can get the politically correct name for this type of behavior.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    It depends if it's supposed to be a joke or not....

    But I think the correct answer is that he's both an atheist and an anti-religionist.

  • trshmnster the terrible||

    Poe's Law... can't tell if radical anti-religionist or really good imitation of one.

    Either way, it was a good excuse to drag up that utterly ridiculous pissing match from a couple weeks back. Just thinking about it makes my heart warm!

  • wef||

    Judge not, that ye be not judged.

  • MSimon||

    That gives me the ye be jee bees.

  • airforce||

    When I was eight years old, I was driving a farm tractor. Just who are these people?

  • trshmnster the terrible||

    You should be ashamed, and your parents should be as well. FOURE DUH CHILLRUNZZZ!!!

  • ||

    I was taking the Subway around Boston on my own to go to the arcade when I was 9.

    I weep for our future. They won't be able to change their own adult diapers.

  • Wasteland Wanderer||

    I was running around in the desert with my BB gun at that age. I even got stopped by a cop once; all he wanted was to make sure I wasn't pointing it at some nearby houses.

  • antisocial-ist||

    At the same age, I was driving my granddad's tractor on his farm on weekends.During the week I could walk as far around the town we lived in as I wanted(Just south of Atlanta). I just had to stay off of Stewart Ave.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    I'm sorry, but they had to arrest this guy. They drove all the way over there, they had their boners up, what do you want? That would be like shrugging off a dick tease.

  • Drake||

    So when the police arrested Williamson, did they take him away and leave his kids home alone? Sounds like they endangered a bunch of kids.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    I'm hoping he has a wife, otherwise Justin and his sibling will get to have the wonderful experience of going through social services.

  • Christophe||

    More meat for the grinder.

  • Pathogen||

    Why do you hate the children, Drake?

  • Drake||

    Hey, I love the little bastards. That's why I want to make sure they have 24/7 supervision until adulthood (whenever that is now).

  • Dweebston||

    I volunteer my time to supervise girls between the formative years of 18 and 26. I find it's really spiritually uplifting.

  • Dread Pirate Roberts||

    Hauling the father away in handcuffs in front of his kids is a feature of the system, not a bug.

  • creech||

    Don't you remember in "Leave it to Beaver?" At the end of almost every episode, the cops were arresting Ward and June for something the Beav or Wally did.

  • trshmnster the terrible||

    STOP RESISTING!

  • ||

    Shiiiiit, maaaaan. That honky muf' be messin' mah old lady... got to be runnin' cold upside down his head, you know?

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    lol, wtf?

  • ||

    Cut me some slack, Jack! Chump don' want no help, chump don't GET da help!

  • ||

    "Pardon me. I speak Jive."

  • ||

    Say 'e can't hang, say seven up!

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    Chump don't want no help chump don't get dick help!

  • SusanM||

    ...and don't call me Shirley.

  • Drake||

    I would have loved to see Ward tased and June strip-searched.

  • MegaloMonocle||

    [Furiously types "Leaving With Beaver" slashfic.]

  • ||

    Jesus, dude, do I have to title it for you? It's so obvious:

    "Punishing June's Beaver"

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    "Leave it in June's Beaver". Duh.

  • ||

    June's Beaver would be Theodore "The Beaver" Cleaver, her son.

    Welcome to an FBI watchlist, sickos.

  • ||

    THAT'S THE JOKE JESSE

  • ||

    For you maybe, you're a decency free zone. I expect more from Serious though.

    Besides that, the correct answer is "Cleaving June's Beaver".

  • ||

    I will accept that.

  • MSimon||

    "Splitting June's Beaver" has more Class.

  • Pathogen||

    Well.. from this story, it's obvious that the child wasn't wearing his protective bubble wrap, crash helmet, blast shield, and oven mitts, and child leash... it's a wonder the child wasn't killed... or worse. That kids father was probably drunk and high teh drugz to just let his child wander the streets... what an asshole, I hope he fry's..

  • Auric Demonocles||

    The alt-text is simple yet brilliant.

  • TheSpiteHouse||

    Heh heh heh. Nice.

  • Gene||

    FYTW would have worked as well.

  • Rich||

    The trouble started when a bus from the Woodville Baptist Church came to pick up 8-year-old Justin

    Why didn't the cops arrest the bus driver?

  • Almanian!||

    Big Sunday School, yo

  • Rich||

    "Can I get an 'Amen!'?"

  • sarcasmic||

    When I was 8 years old I was flying by myself between my divorced parents, catching connecting flights and everything. We've devolved into a nation of pussies.

  • Dweebston||

    When you were eight years old Kennedy was scolding the Kremlin over that whole Cuba thing. Times have changed, gramps. It's a dangerous world out there.

    *kickflips skateboard, tags church marquee*

  • sarcasmic||

    When I was eight years old, Reagan had just move into the White House. I'm old, but I don't fart dust.

  • MSimon||

    When I was 8 Eisenhower got elected.

  • Rich||

  • RishJoMo||

    Cops seem to have WAY too much spare time. Shortage of REAL crime in the area I guess?

    www.WentAnon.tk

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