Free-Range Kids

Napping Child Left in Car While Parents Run Quick Errand, Everyone Loses Their Minds

Child services is still hounding this family.

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Kid
Constantin Opris / Dreamstime

A mom, dad, and their preschooler went to Home Depot in Valley Stream, Long Island, last Saturday to get some Christmas lights. The boy fell asleep in the car, so the parents cracked open the sun roof and let him snooze while they ran their errand. A passerby saw the boy and called 911 to report a child in a car, "unconscious."

When the parents came out about 20 minutes later (the lights had been hard to find), they found a huge commotion at their car. Cops! Firemen! An ambulance! A fireman had smashed open their rear passenger window and was extricating their son as if the car was on fire.

Then, rather than seeing that the boy was startled but fine, the safety kabuki began.

That's according to the dad, W. Cheung. Cheung tried to take control of the situation and reached for his son, but a cop screamed at him not to touch the child. The mom was allowed into the ambulance to accompany her child to the emergency room, because the authorities decided the now fully awake, totally fine child must nonetheless be medically examined.

Then, as Cheung wrote me in an email:

I was searched handcuffed and placed In a patrol car. Then taken to the fifth precinct of Nassau police department. Fingerprinted and photos taken and in a cell for over 5 hours.

He emailed me his summons for "child endangerment."

Released at 10:30 p.m., Cheung rushed over to the hospital where his wife and son were still waiting, since they didn't have the car. Cheung learned that even though this was billed as a dire "emergency," they'd had to wait two hours for a doctor to see the boy.

After another three hour wait, the boy was also checked out by a social worker in the trauma unit, according to Cheung. The social worker could see the boy was fine, but the family's information was recorded, and a Child Protective Services worker was assigned to follow up. When the family finally got home late that night, their phone rang: It was a social worker from family services. She was standing outside their house.

This social worker examined the boy as well, and the family's home, opening up the fridge to make sure there was food. She made the boy and his sibling lift up their shirts so she could look for bruises. And after asking some more questions, she left, according to Cheung.

Now, maybe you wouldn't let your child wait in the car for 20 minutes. But chances are that your parents did that with you, because this was once universally acceptable. Only very recently have we become convinced that a child in a parked car is automatically in terrible danger, despite the fact that more kids die crossing parking lots than waiting in cars.

As Cheung writes:

The officer told my wife that if your our child is out of sight for more than "10 seconds"! We are endangering our child. 10 seconds! What if I have to get gas and pay the cashier in the store? God forbid I bought a bottle of water while in there.

This is simply hysteria. If the officer truly believes a child is in danger if "left alone" for 10 seconds, there is something wrong with the officer, not the parents. And yet the officer has all the power, as do the laws in 19 states that have criminalized parents who decide their kid can wait out an errand in the car.

Cheung wrote that this incident made him feel like a "horrible father, a criminal, and a worthless person."

And it wasn't over yet. On Wednesday I got a new email from him: Another social worker had come to his home and stripped both of his kids naked to look for signs of abuse. Seeing a "Mongolian spot" on the 4-year-old—a common type of birthmark on the lower back (I was born with one, too)—the social worker took photos of the boy's behind. Next, the social worker will visit the boy's pre-school to observe how he plays.

Let's hope the kid does not hit his stuffed animal, or this could spell doom for the family.

As for the dad, he has to hire a lawyer. He replaced his window for $350. And he has a court date in two weeks.

Could the authorities possibly waste any more time and money on this case? A case where no child is, or ever was, in real danger. Based on what we've seen so far, my guess is yes.

As for what to do if you do see a child in a car and you're worried, I'd recommend waiting a few minutes for the parents to come out, going inside the store and asking around if absolutely necessary, and calling 911 only as a last resort.

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  1. As for what to do if you do see a child in a car and you’re worried, I’d recommend waiting a few minutes for the parents to come out, going inside the store and asking around if absolutely necessary, and calling 911 only as a last resort.

    My recommendation: take the kid. Parents have to learn somehow, and I’d rather not leave those kid of lessons to government. It takes a a village, you know.

    1. It also takes many typos. I got a lot of sleep last night, but it apparently didn’t help much.

    2. Then you’ll be the subject of Lenore’s next blog post.

    3. When in doubt, do the opposite of what Doug Llewellyn tells you to do.

      1. Call Llewelyn Moss.

    4. You realize Long Island is Preet Brararah’s turf….

      1. AFAIK, mere “child endangerment” is not a federal crime. But you can be damn sure it would have been had the election gone the other way.

        1. Tell that to all the burnt corpses in Waco. Child abuse was one of the justifications for the siege.

    5. IMHO, it’s situational. If it’s in FL (or AZ) in the summer, yes, I’d call 911 on a kid asleep in a car. If it’s in NY in the winter, I wouldn’t be worried, and would leave things alone.

  2. But chances are that your parents did that with you, because this was once universally acceptable.

    AND I BARELY SURVIVED.

    1. Let’s see.

      Sleep in the car.

      Wake to someone breaking into the car.

      Which is more traumatic?

  3. Seriously, what the fuck, America?!

    1. Time to fire up the chippers

      1. Vote Woodchipper 2018!

        Make Woodchippers Useful Again!

  4. Hi Lenore! Long time no see!!!

    1. No Lenore is good Lenore. Not hating on her, but her posts are uniformly nut-punchy.

      1. Unfortunately, I think her recent absence had more to do with the election than the sudden awakening of the American populace as to how stupid this shit is.

  5. As for what to do if you do see a child in a car and you’re worried, I’d recommend waiting a few minutes for the parents to come out, going inside the store and asking around if absolutely necessary, and calling 911 only as a last resort.

    How about unless the kid is bleeding or having a seizure or something, you mind your own fucking business?

    1. Mind your own business ? This is America, we don’t do MYOB anymore.

    2. Minding your own business is racist.

    3. How about unless the kid is bleeding or having a seizure or something, you mind your own fucking business?

      ^This^ X 1,000,000

  6. As for what to do if you do see a child in a car and you’re worried, I’d recommend waiting a few minutes for the parents to come out, going inside the store and asking around if absolutely necessary, and calling 911 only as a last resort.

    Or knock on the window to try to wake them up. Bonus points if you make the kid cry.

  7. I’ve been leaving my kid home alone since she was nine. The worst part is…I’ve been afraid to tell anyone. Even people I trust can’t be trusted in this climate. She’s 11 now and it’s still something I’m careful with this information.

    1. That’s about the age my parents stopped hiring babysitters. I also never had a curfew and was allowed to take 5-hour solo road trips as soon as I got my license.

      Maybe they were trying to get rid of my. I showed them!!!

      1. At 11, I became a boy scout. I had a knife, a hatchet, and a box of matches. Good times.

        1. I’d even say that’s kinda sheltered, unless you were 11 in 2008 or something.

          1. more like 1968

          2. Yep, at the ripe old age of 9, I got off the school bus with my brother who was 16 months older than me. we hurried through our chores, then made sure the livestock had water. After that we grabbed our fishing poles & pellet guns & headed across the pasture for faraway ponds to shoot turtles & fish. We didn’t come home until dark. At 13 I traded the pellet gun up for a Remington .22 & we were off from 4PM to about 6:30 nearly every day hunting & fishing after school with zero supervision. Sometimes only one of us went. It just depended on if one of us was more interested in riding our bikes down all the dirt roads. It was nothing for us to travel 10-15 miles from home after school all alone. This was in the mid to late 80’s & early 90’s that we grew up.
            Amazing how sissified our society has become in just 25-30 years.

        2. I had all those things, plus a rifle and a motorcycle.

      2. *me

    2. Well, your secret is out now.

      Right now, your IP along with many other obviously negligent parents posting here are being traced and reported to your local CPS office. Now if you all just had gubermnint issued internet IDs it would make it so much easier on the state to help you parent those children in your so called care.

      You better get the story straight with “your” kid before the CPS worker does. Remember to teach your children to make solid eye contact when they answer the CPS worker’s interrogation with the universally appropriate response of, “Fuck you” to any and all questions.

    3. The worst part is…I’ve been afraid to tell anyone. Even people I trust can’t be trusted in this climate.

      Divide and conquer the peasants!

  8. I just hope the city/county is picking up the tab for the ER visit and the ambulance ride.

    1. Why not hope the kid got a magical flying unicorn while you’re at it? Dream big, man!

    2. I just hope the city/county is picking up the tab for the ER visit and the ambulance ride.

      Why exactly does the ER visit or ambulance ride cost anything in this case? I can kinda, maybe see why the ER visit cost something, but shouldn’t the ambulance ride, at most, be on par with cab or bus fare? Those EMTs were gonna get paid either way.

      1. Bless your heart. You think the cost should have some reasonable association with the time and effort involved!

        1. Seriously, is there like a union rider that guarantees them overtime and/or hazard pay once the bell rings and even if there’s no hazard? It’s not like they had to set any bones, put him on a backboard, or administer IVs/CPR.

          I’m curious as to the justification/rational for fees incurred treating a kid who isn’t sick or injured. Seems like all of our EMT visits distinctly required treatment and/or treatment en route. I’m not intimately familiar with the details as most of it got rolled up and handed off to my white privilege insurance agent to haggle over. What prices I do recall seeing, while on the higher end for medical supplies, weren’t anything like $5.00/mi. fuel charges or anything.

          1. The fire fighter’s unions long ago got it written into their contracts that anytime and ambulance (private but regional contracts usually) is called, the FD has to respond. They justified it by saying they had special equipment that the ambulances did not – resuscitators and because their EMTs were so much more eminently qualified than the mere rif-raf that staffs those for profit ambulance companies..

            In the meantime, half the country is still covered by volunteer fire departments who actually respond to………….fires. Go figure.

            There’s a reason that public employees should not be allowed to unionize.

      2. There are volunteer ambulance outfits even here in Brooklyn specifically because the public ride can be a huge financial burden on folks.

        1. I got a $1400 bill for an ambulance ride of less than a mile onto the army base that I was stationed at. The dim witted government employees sent the bill to my mother in Idaho rather than charging it to the guy that ran me over or sending it to the base hospital. Go public unions!

    3. Even Obungler does not have enough hope to make that change possible.

    4. ^^ No way. Why do you think they called fire and police. They have to justify their existence. God forbid the response be proportional to the required task.

    5. I just hope the city/county is picking up the tab for the ER visit and the ambulance ride.

      That’s a joke, right?

      No chance in hell of that. Lucky if the parents don’t have to pay cash to the “social worker” stripping their kid.

  9. The big question is: did the kid learn anything from this? Don’t trust anybody. Not the cops, the firemen, the social workers, the nosy neighbors. They all want to fuck with you.

    1. Sleep with one eye open.

      1. Gripping your pillow tight.

        1. EXIT LIGHT

  10. But chances are that your parents did that with you, because this was once universally acceptable.

    Sure, your parents did that with you, and you turned out OK. But you never hear about those who didn’t turn out OK, do you? BECAUSE THEY ALL SUFFOCATED/BURNED UP/WERE KIDNAPPED AFTER BEING LEFT ALONE IN THE CAR AND AREN’T AROUND TO TALK ABOUT IT.

    /sarc

    1. Yep. “Get out of that tree before you fall out and break your neck”.

      Does anyone remember any kid falling out of a tree and breaking their neck? Arms maybe. But necks?

    2. I’m not sure we should be using this comment board as an example of people who turned out OK.

  11. Napping Child Left in Car While Parents Run Quick Errand, Everyone Loses Their Minds

    Can’t lose something you never had.

  12. She made the boy and his sibling lift up their shirts so she could look for bruises.

    My kids are only 5 and 2, but looks like I need to teach them when to say “fuck off pervert.”

  13. If you leave all of the windows down like your parents did, the chance of suffocating/dying of heat stroke are near zero. Of course, you’ll be arrested for creating an attractive nuisance to sex traffickers or something.

    1. Brett – OT, but you were talking about not being able to find good eats in St. Pete. When I lived there, I went to this place for banh mi. This was a couple years ago at this point, but it was pretty good.

      1. Thanks. Will try.

    2. It’s pretty chilly in Long Island this time of year. Kid was much better off with the windows up.

  14. “Another social worker had come to his home and stripped both of his kids naked to look for signs of abuse. Seeing a “Mongolian spot” on the 4-year-old?a common type of birthmark on the lower back (I was born with one, too)?the social worker took photos of the boy’s behind. Next, the social worker will visit the boy’s pre-school to observe how he plays.”

    So to protect the kids from abuse, the social worker strips them down and takes naked pictures? I think they are going after the wrong person here.

    1. That’s not the kind of social worker I saw in a Lifetime channel movie.

  15. Always tint your windows, my friends.

    1. Or just toss your kids in the trunk before you go into a store.

      1. Well this kid was sleeping, so throw a blanket over him.

  16. As for what to do if you do see a child in a car and you’re worried, I’d recommend waiting a few minutes for the parents to come out, going inside the store and asking around if absolutely necessary, and calling 911 only as a last resort.

    Snitches get stitches.

  17. Where did Lenore learn to WRITE? Christ on a cracker, what a shit article!!!!! The whole way through, author just refers to THE CHILD…

    Is the Child 2?

    10?

    17?

    FFS, Who What Where When Why and How…

    You are writing an article about a complete and total overreaction by Public Safety and Social Workers (and god knows it sounds absurd) over a CHILD left in a car, without including the CRITICAL piece of info — how OLD was this child?

    and this SHIT got past an editor too?

    ffs, Reason criticizes cops all the time but I’m pretty sure cops would at least … you know… include the kid’s AGE in their documentation

    it’s not an irrelevant detail

    ffs…

    1. ok, I’m AN IDIOT

      It says PRESCHOOLER…

      40 lashes …

      ffs Mea Culpa

      Apologies

      1. ok, I’m AN IDIOT

        That is already understood by everyone else here. Now fuck the hell off, Dunphy.

        1. Wow! When Tonio slaps you I’m gonna take it faith that you deserve it.

            1. He’s famously on record as saying anyone who answers their door at 2 am with a gun in their hand can and should be blown away by the cops. Period. Full stop.

              1. Long time no see, Dumbass Known as Dumphy
                I see you’re just as much of a stupid cunt as you always were.
                Now go drop dead, pig.

      2. Point remains; preschool is from birth to 5 or 6 depending on state.

        1. It’s irrelevant. Leaving a child of any age in a car for 20 minutes is not dangerous.

      3. ok, I’m AN IDIOT

        It says PRESCHOOLER…

        40 lashes …

        Aren’t you a current/former police officer or other officer of the law? Good thing that preschooler wasn’t a doberman with a knife, you’d both be dead now!

        1. Yes, and he bench-presses Morgan Fairchild or something

          hth

          1. And is a professional wind surfer… And plays lead guitar in a metal band…

    2. Read for comprehension before you criticize. First sentence in the editorial:
      “A mom, dad, and their preschooler went to Home Depot in Valley Stream, Long Island, last Saturday to get some Christmas lights.”

      Pre-schooler is under 5 years old.

  18. Leaving your child unattended for more than ten seconds is the new Untermensch.

  19. As a kid, unless a store had a toy department, I would prefer to wait in the car and listen to the radio and my mom was usually more than happy to leave me there rather than have to listen to me ask her when she would be done trying on dresses or getting her hair done.

    There have been many times I wish I could leave my sons (agest 7 and 3) in the car because they run around the store and generally pains in the butt, but I do not want to end up in jail.

    1. There have been many times I wish I could leave my sons (agest 7 and 3) in the car because they run around the store and generally pains in the butt, but I do not want to end up in jail.

      I see this as self-correcting. TVs at gas station pumps have also been a godsend for the ‘quick trip’ while leaving them in the car. The state-mandated sticker says you shouldn’t leave the pump unattended, the TV above the pump says ‘Come in now and check out our selection!’

      I expect these phrases to be edited out sometime soon.

      1. You shouldn’t leave the pump unattended while it’s operating. Once you’ve filled up have at.

  20. CPS is just SUCH a bad idea. An entire bureaucracy dedicated to the proposition that the Government is likely to be better at raising children than letting them be raised by wolves. Is there even any evidence for that proposition.

    If a child’s parents abuse or kill it, that is a tragedy. If the government abuses or destroyed a family, IT IS BEING DONE IN MY NAME. That is an obscenity easily on a level with the worst sexual abuse imaginable.

    1. IT IS BEING DONE IN MY NAME

      That’s why I’m against the death penalty. If one factually innocent person is executed, it is in my name, and I don’t recall signing up to be a murderer.

      1. Government is the people we murder together.

      2. I would be prepared to support the death penalty, IF prosecutors who were found to have withheld material evidence in death penalty cases were prosecuted for conspiracy to commit murder. I am barbarian enough to think that executing someone like John Wayne Gacy is mitigating a dangerous animal, but I for DAMN sure want to be sure of killing the right animal.

    2. Maybe if this kind of thing happens to enough suburban soccer mom types, they will stop voting for politicians who seem overly obsessed with “the children”…

      1. Not a chance. Not when there’s child molesters hiding behind every tree and sex traffickers trolling every parking lot looking for unattended children to snatch, which the nightly news assures them is the case.

    3. CPS is just SUCH a bad idea.

      ^This. It’s gotten to the point that every case of child abuse is now being blamed on the city not “doing something” about it. Now I normally like the idea of Deblasio blubbering on TV but I have to reluctantly admit that, no, he is not at fault when, say, a parent murders their child and he didn’t “prevent” it.

      1. My mother-in-law works for CPS. Wanna hear about some really sad situations and shitty people you’d like to take a baseball bat to? Talk to a social services worker. As this article outlines, our society as a whole has become idiotically overprotective of kids, far beyond rational justification. But that doesn’t mean that terrible people don’t exist. And terrible people sometimes have kids, and those kids are sometimes abused, neglected, etc. It is morally indefensible to collectively say “oh well, them’s the breaks” and just ignore child abuse.

        I’m not necessarily defending CPS in its current iteration, but I am defending the idea that kids sometimes get born to horrible people and society should do something about it.

        1. But given that that is the case, I’d think that the CPS people would be able to recognize when they are dealing with parents who are good parents, but didn’t realize that people would freak the fuck out if they left their kid in the car for a little while. I would imagine that it is pretty obvious when you are dealing with shitty neglectful or abusive parents.

          1. I’m not a case worker so I can’t say for sure, but I’m guessing you’re right. My understanding of the dept is that case workers have a good amount of ability to make judgement calls like you describe. Judges also hold their opinions in very high regard when making decisions to take custody and things like that, so in the overall scheme of things, the common sense and judgement of an individual case worker has a great deal of sway over how things play out.

            However, what case workers DON’T have power over is whether to show up at someone’s house who has been reported. In the story from the article for instance, the case worker who came to their house to check on the kids didn’t make that decision – they were probably required to by law. What they have power over though is to do a thorough check, see that the kids are completely fine, and make that report.

            The really screwy part of this story is the hilarious overreaction of the “rescue” teams – couldn’t they have seen the window was open? That the kid was sleeping? Any number of more measured responses than breaking windows and arresting parents on sight?

          2. Problem is, a lot of people are self-appointed arbiters of morality. They are white knights of teh childrunz. CPS attracts moronic busy bodies and people who want to be controlling and invasive.

        2. But the inevitable result of “society doing something about it” is stories like this appearing along the way to the state eventually raising your children for you. There is no middle ground. You give them an inch and they will take it all.

          1. That’s fairly hyperbolic. How long is this slippery slope to parents no longer raising their own kids at all? Stories like this aside, we have an enormous amount of latitude to raise our kids they way we see fit.

            1. Let your kids walk to the playground by themselves and watch what happens to them and you.

            2. Oh you have a lot of latitude, if you follow the rules, aka not much latitude.

        3. But it’s easier to go after the low hanging fruit like this.

        4. I am a social worker too. The country would be better without CPS. Mandatory reporting is an abomination. The whole system is fucked and based off statistically rare cases that are barely stopped anyway.

    4. Actually, there is evidence CONTRARY to just this. Don’t you remember the horror stories about the orphanages in the Eastern Block countries that were left to be raised by the government in those institutions? Is that what we want here?

  21. The really scary part of this is that all the child abuse is done at the state level; just think if whats-her-name had been elected and created a cabinet position to “make this uniform and safe for all”!

    1. This kind of stuff almost always seems to happen in affluent suburbs (Nassau County, NY, Evanston, IL). You almost never hear of it in places like Baltimore which have much bigger problems, perhaps because most of the parents are already in jail.

      1. And the police realize that there are actual problems to deal with and don’t have time for stupid bullshit.

        1. This is the attraction of living in high crime neighborhoods. Besides the property bargains, of course.

  22. 1st post. This local incident may be of some interest.
    .
    “No charges against Rome cop whose baby died after being left in car for 8-plus hours”
    .
    http://www.syracuse.com/crime/…..s_car.html
    .
    Frank

    1. Mark Fanfarillo then drove home, forgetting his sleeping baby was in the back. When Mark Fanfarillo got home, he did some chores and then fell asleep.

      When the baby’s mother, Jessica, went to pick up their infant son at day care at 4:20 p.m. that day, she was told the child had not been dropped off that day, the DA said. She then called her husband at home, who then realized he had forgotten to drop Michael at day care that morning, the district attorney said.

      The infant had been in the car in his car seat all day, the DA said. When Mark Fanfarillo got the call from his wife, he ran out to the car “and found his son’s lifeless body in the car,” the DA said. He tried to resuscitate him, but his efforts and those of medical personnel responding to the call for help were fruitless, the DA said.

      So, will this end in divorce or will she stick with him for the life-long pension benefits?

      1. Divorce and get 50% of the pension.

      2. When the baby’s mother, Jessica, went to pick up their infant son at day care at 4:20 p.m. that day, she was told the child had not been dropped off that day, the DA said

        *Not to pass blame* but drop off times at our daycare(s) were fairly well defined and if you didn’t make it, everybody involved with the kid knew that the child was ‘missing’.

        Apparently, there’s an older brother in the picture, I hope he’s well into his teens. Otherwise, I can’t imagine the sort of existential questions that will haunt that kid at night.

        1. Agreed. But honestly, in most cases, these aren’t bad parents, the end results are tragic, but in over reporting people think “we must do something about this.”

          So now your the social worker, see a kid you are friends of the family with inside a locked car. You think, correctly, they’re good parents, someone is coming back soon. You move on.

          Kid dies.

          Now, due only to the overreaction to tragic mistakes, a situation is setup where these incidents must be investigated, because if they are known and not investigated, those who knew will be blamed for the death.

          The cries of, “How did you not know? Don’t you watch TV?”

          Note: CPS sucks and should be abolished, but the issue here seems to be that we don’t allow for tragic mistakes anymore. Every negative result found to be too painful for others, is turned into a problem which most be prevented. Hunting accidents require more regulation. Kid falls on jungle gym, it must be removed. Kid gets hurt on motorcycle, add laws to require specific protection.

          Never again will “shit happen” as with our enlightenment, we apparently now hold the power to make human mistakes a thing of the past, by punishing equally mistakes and willful planning so long as the end results are tragic.

          Afterall – why punish a grieving family, as they have in other cases, where there’s zero chance of it happening again, if not for revenge only?

          It cannot deter human mistakes and protects no one, except injured feelings, yet….

    2. This is the kind of JBT I want to see ambushed. He deserves it.

  23. Another social worker had come to his home and stripped both of his kids naked to look for signs of abuse. Seeing a “Mongolian spot” on the 4-year-old?a common type of birthmark on the lower back (I was born with one, too)?the social worker took photos of the boy’s behind.

    Sounds like this “social worker” is a complete pervert. My guess is they’re probably rubbing one out to that picture of the boy’s behind right now. Sick fuck.

  24. Hell, if you are that worried, break a damn window. Then you can decide if you want to walk away or wait. Either way, you have still been nicer to the parents and probably the child than if you’d sicked CPS on em.

  25. I’d recommend waiting a few minutes for the parents to come out, going inside the store and asking around if absolutely necessary, and calling 911 only as a last resort if you are willing for someone to catch a bullet over this.

    1. Babies Lives Matter!

  26. So, um, preschooler.

  27. In CA, they do this with the elderly too.

    My 86 yo mother called me to come take her to the emergency because she had fallen. She wasn’t hurt but she doesn’t drive and she thought an ambulance was over-the-top in this case.

    After an emergency room exam gave her the all clear, a social worker came and took our information and took my mom off for private questioning. They wanted her to be able to tell them if I was abusing her in any way and if I had made her fall.

    WTF? I live 30 miles away!

    They assigned a social worker to follow up on the case who checked in with my mom via phone a few times after that.

    I’d gladly pummel anyone I knew who was physically abusing an elderly person. But this kind of assumption of guilt based on no evidence of any kind is government overreach at its finest.

    When are we going to put the government genie back in the bottle? When will people wake up?

  28. Yes, this story seems like “hysteria,” but once you consider it from today’s perspective, it isn’t so dismissible. Yes, I was left in the car when I was a kid, but we never heard of kids dying from heatstroke or being snatched, either. It seems that we regularly hear of some sort of incident like this nowadays. Furthermore, when I was a kid, only those directly responsible for harming someone were charged with a crime or litigated against. Today, however, that Home Depot would be liable as well as anyone that authorities were able to identify who refused to take action. Lastly, because of all of the morons who *do* forget about their kids, what is a bystander supposed to do when noticing a small child left alone in a vehicle who is “sleeping?”

    We no longer live in a free society, so behaviors that might seem to Libertarians to be ‘radical’ are simply forced now due to threat of stupidity and penalty.

    1. Child mortality statistics have done nothing but go down in the US. Crime rates – includes those situations where children got snatched – have done nothing but go down. I think it is actually more probable that the kid would be hit by a lightning strike in the parking lot then being “snatched” from the locked car. This sort of incident (and the idiot(s) who forgot a kid in the back seat, typically due to a combination sleep deprivation and rear facing car seats) is news because it is relatively rare – thankfully. Just because we now hear about this incident in Italy, don’t assume that it could not have been happening there previously.

    2. Well, for one, without car seats, babies who couldn’t move on their own, would have been in the parent’s lap, instead of in the backseat facing the opposite direction. The kids dying from heatstroke is a by-product of another safety measure.

  29. You want social workers full of bullet holes cause this is how you make that happen.

    1. “You want social workers full of bullet holes”

      In this case ….. maybe?

  30. Another social worker had come to his home and stripped both of his kids naked to look for signs of abuse.

    Abuse, like being stripped naked by agents of the State?

    I’m often puzzled that there aren’t frequent stories of people shooting these state goons who assault their children.

    1. There are people out there who are alive only because it’s a felony to kill them.

  31. CPS needs to be eradicated.

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  33. “As for what to do if you do see a child in a car and you’re worried, I’d recommend waiting a few minutes for the parents to come out, going inside the store and asking around if absolutely necessary, and calling 911 only as a last resort.”

    Bull shit! If you see a kid in a car and the kid appears to be OK, go on about your business and don’t be a nosey SOB. Get a life ? you’re not responsible for children sleeping peacefully in their own car.

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  35. In other news James Comey says

    “no reasonable prosecutor would bring such a case”

    But that only applies to high profile democrats who set up their own email server to illegally avoid transparency and then delete all of the data while its preservation is under congressional order. If you are an innocent parent making reasonable choices about your child persecuting you is entirely reasonable.

  36. These parents have got to be the worst choice for a “free range kids” sob story.

    They left the preschooler (under 6?) while still sleeping (i.e. kid would have no idea where the parents are)
    Were gone for at least 20 minutes
    Both parents were there….so one could have waited with the friggin kid.

    And all this is told from the father’s perspective….so almost certainly described in the most favorable light.

    Screw CPS and do-gooding idiots.
    But screw these idiotic parents too. They should not be held out as a sob story. There are far better examples out there, FFS.

  37. When the war against fathers started in the 1970’s we lost our parental rights under the guise of “taking care of children”. Ironically, the fact that the father was arrested and the mother goes in the ambulance shows the sexual bias against fathers in this state and the nation. What a sad state of affairs we have developed in this biased country and corrupt governments which regulate the family and parental rights into non existence.

  38. I hope that Mr. Cheung sues the cop individually and the city for his discomfort. A reasonable amount would be five or ten million dollars from the city and $100,000 from the cop. I see no other alternative to ending such insane abuses. Obviously, shaming won’t help since these people have no sense of shame.

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  40. As the CPS “worker” left, I would have been on the phone to the FBI reporting someone with child pornography on their phone. But then, I never left a kid in a car.

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  43. Even though its OK to have safety measures for children but it should also be made sure that parents are not unnecessarily harassed as mentioned in the post. A similar situation also happened with my friend and she too had to face a tough time dealing with the authorities so she consulted a renowned attorney based right here in Paris and he guided her perfectly. So its always better to take legal help in such matters.

  44. This happened to me in the 80s. I had no idea there were so many police in the county. They all came by and it was like a carnival. They didn’t break the window though. They did haul me away and not my wife. I spent a few hours in jail before bail. I had to put up with the CPS people. I had to go to court where they found me not guilty and it was expunged. However I did have to put up with CPS people and counselling for a year or so until we moved. Having psychiatrists and CPS people that don’t have a clue about how to live their own lives judging and controlling your life is hell. You have to pretend you agree with them, even like them, when you are really thinking they are fat lazy POS government employees not worth living. Yet you smile and defer because they control your entire life. The system needs a total overhaul.

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