Free-Range Kids

Mom Charged for Letting Her Daughter, 11, Wait in Car

Everything is dangerous when it comes to kids. Even a normal wait in a car.

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Crying
Crimfants / Flickr

A mother in Bristol, Connecticut, was charged with leaving a child unsupervised in a car Wednesday. How old was the helpless tyke?

Eleven.

Why was she in the car? She asked her mom if she could stay there.

Was she in danger of boiling to death? According to WFSB:

When officers opened the car doors, they said the child was responsive and not in distress, and that the car was not "excessively hot."

In other words, the 11-year-old girl was indisputably fine. Not overheated, not abandoned, not upset—nothing. 

So don't just ask why the mom was charged with a crime, ask why is this a crime? Why does the law get to decide how a mom should raise her kids? Why does the law treat a self-sufficient 11 year old as a helpless forsaken baby? Why does the law allow cops to harass tweens and moms just going about their day? 

free-range-kids

The answer: Our laws leap to the very worst case scenario first—a child could die!—and refuse to make any distinction between an infinitesimal risk and a huge one. Everything is dangerous when it comes to kids. Even a normal wait in a car.

The mom is scheduled to appear in court on July 21.

Meanwhile, another mom was just charged with a similar crime. Read about it here. Among the interesting details in this case: The mother had her sister-in-law watching the car and the kids the entire (short!) time she ran the errand, and now she's terrified the state will take her children away.