Free-Range Kids

Mother Arrested for Letting 10-Year-Old Shop Alone at Lego Store

The child visited one store in the mall while the mother visited another.

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Lego Movie / YouTube

An upstate New York mom has been arrested for an unspeakable crime. She allowed her 10-year-old child to shop alone at the Lego store in the local mall while she shopped in a different store.

The horror.

Rochester station WHEC reports:

The Ontario County Sheriff's Office says a Pittsford mother is accused of leaving her ten-year-old child alone in the Lego Store at Eastview Mall while she shopped.

Deputies say that 44-year-old Jia Fan was arrested at about 5:37 p.m. Sunday evening. She is charged with endangering the welfare of a child.

Ah yes, that poor, endangered kid, surrounded by small pieces of plastic.

Alert readers may recall that in 2014 a mom in Long Island, New York, was arrested for leaving her 7-year-old at the Roosevelt Field Mall Lego store for one hour and 20 minutes while she shopped elsewhere in the mall. And in 2015, a Lego store in Canada detained an 11-year-old for being "too young" to shop alone. That child's father, Doug Dunlop, wrote a letter to the company:

Dear Lego,

Today, our son went to the Lego store in Chinook Mall, Calgary, Alberta. He had over $200 and was intending to purchase some Lego with it….

Imagine my surprise when I entered the store and found that the manager had called a security guard to detain my son….

I spoke to the security guard who told me that the Lego store required a parent to be with any child 12 or under. He stated that it was Lego store policy and that he was just enforcing it.

I then followed the guard to the manager, and asked him why he would call security on my son. He stated that for safety reasons, no child under 12 could be left unattended in the store.

Is a child of double digits "unattended" or simply "on their own" if they are out in public without an adult chaperone? One label implies negligence on the part of the parent; the other label implies a parent who has raised a competent young adult.

Another question: Did Lego call the cops on the latest kid, or did the cops stumble upon the kid on their own?

The Lego corporate press office has still not responded to my request for comment. The manager of the Eastview Mall Lego store, Dan Prouty, told me that he could not comment on whether or not someone at his store called the cops. But Prouty did acknowledge that there's a sign in his store's window that says, in his words, "children under the age of 12 are not allowed to be unattended in the store—that's paraphrased a little bit."

Official Lego policy does seem to be obsessed with age liability. Consider these admission rules at the Legoland in Toronto:

Please note: Children 17 and under must be accompanied by an adult supervisor 18 years of age or older. Adults (18+) will not be admitted without a child, with the exception of Adult Only Nights.

As for the mom in upstate New York, WHEC says she was "given an appearance ticket, and is expected to answer the charge in Victor Town Court on a future date."

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119 responses to “Mother Arrested for Letting 10-Year-Old Shop Alone at Lego Store

  1. So the only ones in the Lego store to even abduct a child are other parents there with their children? Guess what. Those parents don’t want another kid. The brat they have leaving Legos around to get stepped on are bad enough.

    1. Once saw a pain scale that ranged from 1 [a mild headache] to 10 [stepping on a lego].

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        This is what I do… http://www.onlinecareer10.com

    2. So the only ones in the Lego store to even abduct a child are other parents there with their children?

      No, see, a creepy pedophile can enlist the aid of a child he doesn’t know in order to sneak in and abduct children that are standing around not handcuffed to some other adult, see? LEARN TO CRIME!

  2. And in 2015, a Lego store in Canada detained an 11-year-old for being “too young” to shop alone.

    I’m not sure what’s supposed to upset me about this. A private property owner decided they didn’t want to be treated as a free daycare center and so they had a trespasser removed from their property.

    I guess the sacred freedom of association only applies when you want to kick out gay people out of your store.

    1. Because it’s a stupid policy that will alienate the parents who are paying big bucks for toys? Just spitballin’…

      1. The parents in question aren’t paying big bucks for toys. They’re paying big bucks elsewhere in the mall while expecting the Lego store manager to watch over their kid for free.

        1. We’ll never know how much the parent would have spent in the LEGO store since the employees created a scene and the parent will probably never buy LEGOs again.

        2. How do you know the kid didn’t have any money?

          1. Today, our son went to the Lego store in Chinook Mall, Calgary, Alberta. He had over $200 and was intending to purchase some Lego with it….

            At least some of the little monsters apparently travel with cash. More than that, if you’re a business in a mail that sells a product/service catered to kids, your absolute right to free association notwithstanding, being a babysitter is part of the deal. And it’s just stupid to say it’s not. Back in the day, I probably singlehandedly kept a Kaybee Toys and the arcade at the local mall in business so my Mom could shoe shop in peace.

          2. I have known several specialty stores (comic shops, gaming shops, etc.) that had to have the “we are not your babysitter” talk with customers eventually, or write it into store policy because of this situation.

            It’s not all kids that are the problem, it’s the spoiled brats that they dump in your lap to tear up the store, fuck with the other paying customers, and then cuss you out when you tell them to stop.

            Doing business with them may not be worth the trouble, in terms of ruining the experience for everyone else and driving them off. Most of your money in these specialties comes from a small percentage of loyal customers who are big spenders, and they don’t want to shop at a screeching daycare center.

            Off-topic a bit:

            It’s been my experience that the mutants yelling “I’ll take my business elsewhere!” in your face the loudest would be doing you a favor. (They never do.) Their “business” consists of loitering in the store all day, having loud troll arguments with the other mutants, scaring people off, pissing and moaning about not getting free stuff or whatever discount deal they want, throwing tantrums when they don’t get their way, damaging the goods by using you as a library, and hardly ever actually buying anything.

            While you’re trying to reason (drink!) with this bunch, the regulars who grow weary of what the place has become rarely say anything, they just quietly stop coming back. Oops.

            Turns out you can’t make everybody happy. Choose wisely.

    2. Libertarian individuality principles don’t have to be restricted to snark against governments. Plenty of businesses do stupid things too, as do plenty of people on their own.

      In this particular set of Lego cases, it’s almost as if Lego is trying to prevent their fans from buying anything on their own. When I was that age, I was buying plastic models, on my own, and would have been mortified if the stores had required a parent be with me. My parents would have thought the store extremely stupid for insisting they be dragged around while I poked at the samples.

      Lego deserves the snark.

      1. No, they don’t. It is almost certainly done for liability purposes.

        1. -1 Damn lawyers

          1. Police are immune to litigation. Businesses are not.

        2. Seems to me that detaining an 11 year old also opens you up to potential liability problems. How the hell is that legal?

      2. When I was 10 YO, Mother frequently sent me grocery shopping.

        1. When I was 10 YO, Father frequently sent me cigarette shopping.

          1. I was about 6 or 7 when my Dad sent me to the local corner convenience store to buy him a pack of L.

        2. When I was supposed months old, my dad would send me down to the store for whiskey and smokes, and when I got back, mom would have me crawl to the dealer on the corner to buy crack and heroin.

          1. My mom WAS the crack and heroin dealer.

      3. When I was 9 I got on my bike, road down my street to the first intersection, proceeded on that and through the local Junior High School and made my way to the KMart.

        There, entirely on my own, I took in my dollar in change and purchased model airplanes, along with styrene glue to assemble it [never sniffed the stuff and it never occurred to me that anyone would want to].

        This was in the 1960s. But now we cannot let anyone do anything that might possibly even remotely result in a bad outcome. The “village” rules.

        1. Same sort of thing here. At 9yo (and probably earlier) I was riding my bike to the county fair *on my own*, and allowed to wander about on my own. Heck, a couple months before I turned 10 I was allowed to walk 6 or 8 blocks to school *in San Francisco* all on my own (having previously lived in a rural location). An that was at the height of The Zodiac killings (we *did* have to be accompanied by a parent for trick-or-treat on Halloween, but that was due to a *specific* threat).

        2. Same here. And when my bike had a flat I walked to that store, bought a new tube, tire,or repair kit with my own money, retuned home, repaired or replaced the tube or tire by myself, and never once involved my parents.

    3. WTF is your problem?

      I agree with you, in part, that a privately owned store has the right to have any requirements they wish regarding their customers. And if customers are not able to meet those requirements, they can be requested to leave.

      That is not what happened. They “detained” the 11 year old. From whence does that right come? Is it the mall’s policy that 11 year olds must not be allowed to shop by themselves?

      And my 11 year old doesn’t need a fucking “day care center”.

      1. The store owner had a trespasser, so he called the hired security guard to remove them from the property. If the parent has a problem with what happened to the kid after that, that seem to me to be a problem with the mall, not with the Lego store.

        Although I somehow doubt the parent would have been fine if they later discovered their 11 year old wandering around the parking lot because the security guard had just kicked them out of the mall instead of “detaining” them.

        1. See, nowhere in the article does it say the store employees asked the child to leave and he did not.

          That is trespassing. You ask someone to leave your property and they don’t leave.

          1. EXACTLY!

          2. There was a posted denial of permission for unescorted children, so they were trespassing as soon as they entered the store whether they’d been asked to leave or not.

            1. SD, you look real good in those jack-boots.

            2. I just can’t get over the fact that anyone thinks an 11 year old can’t handle himself in a store for a little while. I could see the issue if people were just dumping their 6 year olds there while they went shopping.

              I guess the lesson is that Lego stores are run by assholes.

              1. Everyone knows the sex traffickers hide in pails of Legos. Come on!

          3. See, nowhere in the article does it say the store employees asked the child to leave and he did not.

            A court would likely find that if the store owners had just asked an underage kid to leave, they would have acted irresponsibly.

            Calling mall security was the right thing to do.

            1. “A court would likely find that if the store owners had just asked an underage kid to leave, they would have acted irresponsibly.”

              Why? What likely and foreseeable harm was present. The kids simply would have been released into the mall general population or “village” to be cared for and supervised by the all loving surveillance state.

              FFS has no one ever heard of Doogie Howser.

    4. But the great thing is being able to point out stupid/hateful/morally repugnant things private businesses do, even if they’re totally within their right to do it (Hate Fil-A, for example). Then the free market works its magic. Those who hate gays can continue to go get their chicken sandwiches and feel morally superior to everyone else, and those of us who don’t want our money funding right-wing “defense of marriage” organizations can refrain from eating there.

      1. Because in Gayland, not supporting gay marriage because you think marriage is between a man and woman is HATE!

        While at the same time HATING Chicken-Fil-A because of them not supporting gay marriage.

        1. I’ve tried Chick-Fil-A a couple times and wasn’t impressed. I couldn’t care less what the boss does with his profits.

          1. I couldn’t care less what the boss does with his profits.

            That makes you a hateful bigot.

        2. Not to mention the fact that Chik-Fil-A is one of the few Christian corporations that actually follows its principles, and treats its employees far better than any other fast food chain. A gay person working at Chik-Fil-A would has better benefits and a better work environment than a gay person at one of the other chains that plasters rainbow flags on everything.

          1. Not would have, _does_ have, as per the several gay Chick-fil-A employees interviewed in various media outlets at the time of the Chicago incident and attempted boycott.

            It turns out the Cathy family manages to separate profit from politics, something every lefty-run business could stand to emulate.

        3. If someone says they “hate” broccoli do you think they are actually consumed with loathing for a vegetable?

          Stop getting caught up on the word “hate”. Clearly you have some sort of irrational bias against gay people. Hiding behind statements like “but I don’t literally HATE them, I just don’t think they deserve the same rights as me!” makes it sound like you trying to convince yourself that you aren’t a bigot more than you’re trying to convince us.

          1. Why do you hate freedom?

          2. Yes, pointing out the hypocrisy of gay people is IRRATIONAL BIAS and makes me a BIGOT.

            As a Libertarian, I could give a fuck what you do consensually to or with other adults.

            Keep convincing yourself you are not a bigot and a hater of dissent to the lefty narrative.

          3. I am just tired of this blatant chicken discrimination.

          4. “If someone says they “hate” broccoli do you think they are actually consumed with loathing for a vegetable?”

            In at least one case – – – Yes!

        4. Not supporting gay marriage is entirely different than refusing to serve gay patrons due to their orientation. The first is allowing the leadership of a company to express its religious and political views while the other is pure discrimination.

          When a business is discriminating against someone by refusing to serve them, the free market responds by refusing to be patrons. It is not against anyone’s religion to serve a gay person. If anything, it’s against their religion NOT to serve them because the majority of religions preach love, forgiveness, and acceptance regardless if they think they are sinners. Too bad most humans don’t get that.

      2. Those who hate gays can continue to go get their chicken sandwiches and feel morally superior to everyone else,

        Someone’s projecting.

        1. It keeps them from having to deal with their own problems if they pretend it’s someone else with the problem.

      3. Agreed and that is why I like Fil-A because they have the courage and conviction to exercise their right to freedom of religion no matter how many bigots resent them for it. This way people that hold people of conviction with contempt voluntarily exile themselves to the benefit of like minded people of conviction who are now free to associate with those of shared values.

        “Those who hate gays …” Define hate. Feel free to include micro-aggressions.

        1. Where in their religion does it tell someone to refuse to serve someone else because of that person’s lifestyle or appearance of sin? They claim to be Christian, right? Would Jesus refuse to serve them?

    5. Yeah, if you’re leaving a 7-year old for an hour and twenty minutes, you’re treating the store as a free daycare center.

      In the other cases, I’d have to know whether the child was a boy or a girl to know what the deal was. From my experience as an 11-year old boy, if your 11-year old boy is shopping for more than about 4 minutes, you’re either treating the store as a free baby-sitting service or he’s gay.

    6. Does my browsing a book store for 90 minutes mean that Barnes & Noble is an adult day care facility? Did the kid require assistance, or was he just looking and playing and taking advantage of the store’s offerings, as a patron is usually allowed?

      Is there a reason you get into these moods, Stormy?

      1. If you’re browsing the B+N for 90 minutes while eating a jelly donut and leaving random piles of jelly-smeared books scattered around the floor, you have no idea how badly that minimum-wage store clerk wants to disembowel you with your own car keys and force you to eat your own intestines.

        1. Someone’s projecting…

          Unless the kid did that donut thing… I didn’t actually read the other articles linked.

    7. Since when do 11-year-olds need a babysitter? Christ, 30 years ago my mom let me roam around the mall by myself at that age for hours. If the kid acts up, put them in the manager’s office until their parents can be located and pick them up, and warn them that if it happens again, they won’t be allowed in the store.

      This shit doesn’t have to be so complicated.

    8. Did they have a sign up saying “no unattended children” or otherwise make it clear to parents that their children will be considered trespassers if left there alone? Otherwise calling the cops was pretty shitty. And shouldn’t they have arrested the kid for trespassing if that was the problem?

      And how much care does an 11 year old in a store really require?

      Yeah, it’s their business. But seems like shitty customer care to call the cops on someone for doing something completely normal. Stores in malls are constantly full of people who likely won’t buy anything. And since when can 11 year olds not walk around a mall on their own? When I was 11, I’m pretty sure I was capable of going into a store and browsing or buying some legos all on my own.

    9. If they wanted to charge the child (or derivatively the parent) with trespassing, that would be their prerogative.

      This is far different. When I was 10, I would walk home from school, and, if I was bored, go to the mall and hang out. Alone.

      Of course, I was abducted at least once a month and was murdered outright on four separate occasions.

    10. Agreed. It isn’t unreasonable to expect parents to be at least in a toy store to supervise an under-12 kid. Kids have a tendency to open, damage, and lose the parts to new toys. Again, private property owner, and people who were hired by the private property owner to do a job that does not involve babysitting other people’s minor children.

      Lego stores aren’t the same as the mall, or as many other stores. They’re packed to the ceiling with things that kids love to play with, obvs. So an unsupervised kid (not saying a 10-year-old or 11-year-old would do this, but they might, depending on how poorly they were raised) could do a lot of damage and lay waste to new merchandise.

      Lego’s in the business of selling toys. Not babysitting. This is their store policy, and it seems a fair one given today’s litigious parents, who sue if a business employee looks at them sideways. It’s not the same as leaving a kid at a public playground, where they’re not going to do any damage. A kid can do a LOT of damage here.

  3. What is Lego trying to do, prevent all customers from entering the store?

    I’d like to see a 17 year old mother come into the store with her 1 year old baby. It would blow their little minds!

  4. I don’t have a problem with the store’s policy but arresting the mother is ridiculous. We all know where that could lead.

  5. Adults (18+) will not be admitted without a child, with the exception of Adult Only Nights.

    Does Legoland break out the Lego dildos and Lego bondage gear for adult only night?

    1. Of course! They’re Danish.

    2. And you thought stepping on Lego was bad…

  6. A ten-year-old? If my parents had to accompany me to KB Toys, I’d never have gone there. (and at a store dedicated to LEGO? fuggedaboutit)

  7. Here is a thought,

    So a parent is accused of “endangering the welfare of a child”, and said parent is allowed to go home with the child they were allegedly “endangering”. This is either negligence on the part of the cops in allowing this monster to take this child home to do unspeakable things, or the law is ridiculous on its face (or at least the enforcement of it).

    1. “…and said parent is allowed to go home with the child they were allegedly “endangering”.

      Not to worry. You can bet that CPS was called and will be following up with the family. Feel better now. Looks like you defeated your own poorly formed argument. Good work.

      How about demanding exactly what was endangering the child.

      1. Someone forgot to calibrate their sarc-o-meter. Of COURSE this is either a stupid law or stupid enforcement.

        1. It appeared, to me, that you were pointing out a flaw with the law based on a perceived loophole enabling further (imagined) monstrous negligence by the parenting unit.

          I understood and appreciated your sarc with the use of monster. I was seeking to emphasis the comprehensive nefariousness of the law with the CPS reference and that this family’s harassment will not end with just one state agency.

          I would argue that it is not an either/or situation but both. I suppose I took exception to a characterization of enforcement as half-assed and incompetent. I like the taste of my sarc to have no hint of an ability to refute and I thought you gave cover for a special audience with a penchant for jack-boots and controlling unsupervised kids.

          I stand moderated and will calibrate my react-o-meter to more restrained.

  8. Any toy store is bad enough with the unsupervised kids running around messing up the shelves, playing with the toys, breaking stuff – have you seen the prices on the Lego kits? Yeah, I want your brats ripping open $75 packages and scattering the pieces around on the floor, that’s always good for profits.

    1. You’re kidding, right? That’s property damage – an actual offense. Leaving your kid alone is not an offense.

    2. Is that what happened?

      Pretty much all of the 11 year old boys I have known would happily spend an hour browsing a Lego store without causing and mess or trouble.

    3. Just because you were an idiot uncontrollable brat at the age of 11 doesn’t mean everyone else at that age is.

  9. >Ah yes, that poor, endangered kid, surrounded by small pieces of plastic.

    Discount the danger all you like, but have you ever stepped on a Lego?

  10. I blame Hillary Clinton and Tipper Gore. This is what happens when you get rid of arcades and/or violent video games.

    I mean if Lego doesn’t want his money and the customer doesn’t want their kids buying legos and the mall needs a place to put loitering children where the hell is the arcade owner to solve this problem?

    1. I blame Hillary Clinton and Tipper Gore

      That’s usually a safe place to start.

    2. Clinton and Gore didn’t kill arcades, home video game consoles caught up with arcade technology and surpassed it.

      I take it you don’t consider Mortal Kombat XL, Call I’d Duty, or Assassin’s Creed violent?

      Now, we can blame Anita Sarkeesian and her ilk for increased censorship in western games, because decapitation is fine but seeing Miki’ s panties in Star Ocean 5 is bad.

  11. As so often in America, the whole thing seem to driven by lawsuits and fear of lawsuits.

    1. This is where the real problem lies, IMO.

      1. No, the real problem lies with the corporate capitulation in response. It is a big FU to customers.
        I’m sure the insurance companies will insure under different circumstances for a bigger premium.

    2. “Let’s kill all the lawyers”

  12. I actually created an account just so I could comment on this.

    I can’t have kids of my own, sadly. But I use legos for helping square up my models (HO scale railroad models). I also have nieces and nephews I would like to buy legos for. Only they live 1000 miles away. There are no neighborhood kids I could kidnap and take to the lego store so I could buy some of their products.

    So their store policy is “no adult without a child?” Seriously? Only on “Adults only” night? I shudder to think what happens in those stores on “Adults only” nights. And what if I have a prior commitment on that given night, or can’t get to the store that particular evening but still need legos?

    This is why we buy stuff online, and why brick-and-mortar stores will become a thing of the past.

    1. That’s for the Legoland, the amusement park. And the age policy there is a whole lot more reasonable.

    2. Amazon Legos: you arent’ going to get a 30% discount on that Technic Bucket Excavator kit at the Official Lego Store.

  13. I’d have had to visit dear ol’ Ma in the pokey many times…

    1. Same here. There’s been many a time that my mom would just let me roam the toy section of Kmart/Walmart or set me loose in the mall as a middle-schooler while she shopped. All with just an instruction of “be in the arcade or in a certain store by so-and-so time”.

      Although I agree with Rhywun, these rules are probably in place now because of insurance or legal influence. Our hyper-litigiousness is what seems to be really killing our freedoms.

      1. Yes, a lot of loss of freedom is because of a problem?tort law?that’s intractable by the usual means. The cause is diffuse: the legal profession & academy, with the assistance of redistributionist jurors. We can attempt ham-fisted solutions like particular legislation directed at specific problems, but for narrow gains at the expense of due process of law.

  14. I called Lego customer service to complain. The rep said the policy was to prevent kids dropping their kid’s off all day. An hour and 20 minutes is not all day. I suggested that Lego not leave items out for kids to play with and perhaps it would be less a attractive. Lego is creating their own attractive nuisance and instead of figuring out a way to make it profitable they simply call policy enforcement agents. FU Lego.

  15. No wonder f’ing malls are dying. With shit like this….where the fuck is my shovel.

    One would think they would be more concerned with kids over 12 and not under.

  16. The mother misused the Lego store for babysitting, and given the liabilities that that entails these days, the Lego store wanted the kid off their property. But if they had just kicked out the kid, given his age, they would likely also have been found liable if anything happened. So, the only option they had was to call security.

    This isn’t about free range kids, it’s about private property and trespass. If a private property owner says “nobody unaccompanied children under 12”, respect that or face the consequences. And he doesn’t have to explain himself to anyone.

    And I don’t see anything about the mom being “arrested”.

    1. And I don’t see anything about the mom being “arrested”.

      It’s in the first line of the post.

    2. From TFA: “Deputies say that 44-year-old Jia Fan was arrested at about 5:37 p.m. Sunday evening. She is charged with endangering the welfare of a child.

  17. Hey Mark,
    A (normal) 10 year old does NOT need/require a babysitter for a shopping excursion. Look up the definition of “arrested.” You think mom was free to go?

    How could they be liable for exercising their rights that you are so emphatically supporting. You seem to have no problem with fucked if they do and fucked if they don’t and you choose to err on the side of police intervention. So, in conclusion, I must say, you are way off the mark.

  18. By the time I was that age, I was riding my bike to the mall down the street. WTH?

    1. Were you riding without training wheels too? Your parents are lucky there are no time machines available. Correcting that horrifying negligence would be worth any ripple in the space/time continuum.

  19. When I was 9 I got on my bike, road down my street to the first intersection, proceeded on that and through the local Junior High School and past my elementary school [yes, I walked or biked to and from like everyone else did every day] and made my way to the KMart.

    There, entirely on my own, I took in my dollar in change and purchased model airplanes, along with styrene glue to assemble it [never sniffed the stuff and it never occurred to me that anyone would want to].

    This was in the 1960s. But now we cannot let anyone do anything that might possibly even remotely result in a bad outcome. The “village” rules.

  20. “This was in the 1960s.” It’s about time the law caught up with that level of parenting….more like custodial care. More evidence that a legislator’s work is never done. Sarc off.

    1. Well naturally; how else are they supposed to create that village thing that none of us can possibly raise our children without?

  21. Back in the 80s, I was about the age of this kid. I wandered the neighborhood, browsed stores all the time (especially bookstores and record stores) on my own, and sometimes even had money to make a purchase… And my parents were totally OVER-PROTECTIVE compared to most of my friends!!!

    Not only did nothing ever happen to me, including being asked to leave a store for causing trouble or opening packages, but I turned out to be a responsible adult who can take care of himself and has some reasonable coping mechanisms when faced with everyday disappointments.

    I can’t help wondering if this story illustrates the real root of the problem when it comes to slightly older college-aged kids these days not being able to deal with anyone even questioning any opinion of theirs or offering the mildest counter-argument. We like to complain about indoctrinated SJWs and snowflakes, but maybe there is a reason they are so utterly helpless when they’ve been chained at the waist to mommy right up until the day they enter university.

    1. I can’t help wondering if this story illustrates the real root of the problem when it comes to slightly older college-aged kids these days not being able to deal with anyone even questioning any opinion of theirs

      I doubt it’s THE root of the problem, but I bet it contributes. If you haven’t learned to deal with anything on your own by the time you are 18, you are going to have a hard time.

      I started walking to town by myself, or with a similar aged friend when I was 6. By 10 I was all over town on my bike and spending my bit of pocket money at various stores. It’s just fucked that anyone thinks that’s not how it should be.

    2. They didn’t have Lifetime TV back then.

    3. That’s the problem with adult children attending college. Eventually the graduate, get married, and become adult children with children.

    4. I blame John Walsh and the victim industry for this mess. Sex offender panic caused parents to keep their kids inside out of fear. Kids staying inside all day are annoying because kids are noisy, so we pumped them full of drugs like Ritalin to keep them calm, and sat them in front of the TV. Even in this current era, mommy is the one to stay home to take care of the kids, and don’t forget the increase of single parent households. It is usually the mother who gets primary custody. Which gender does Lifetime cater to? Also, men and women tend to approach child rearing differently.

  22. There are times I am glad I don’t have any children. If I had some I would definitely be in jail. My parents would always let me wander the mall alone, as long as I told them where I was going. I would also walk to school alone, go to the park alone, etc. This was in the heyday of “omg stranger danger”, by the way. Even in the height of the razor-blades-in-apples and lsd-candy Halloween scares I was still allowed to go trick-or-treating by myself.

    We’ve become a nation of pussies.

  23. It’s funny, back in the 70s I would literally walk a mile to a nearby shopping mall,

    This country has completely lost its mind. And considering all the stupid stuff it’s done, that’s saying something.

  24. GEEZE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

  25. Don’t blame LEGO. This is almost certainly to protect themselves against liability. Somewhere along the line, there are an attorney’s fingerprints on this.
    Also – as a private company, LEGO is free to set its own rules. And since children are not one of the “protected classes” (yet) they have the freedom to associate, or not with unsupervised children. They’re not a daycare.

    1. ^ This.
      I came here expecting comments about some state overreach, which appears to have happened in the case of the mom arrested for child endangerment. THAT is deplorable. THAT is a case of the government overreaching and charging someone against a law that clearly has no reasonable definition.

      However, to all of those “libertarians” whining about a private company making rules about the use of their property… FU! This is absolutely no different than forcing a private company or person to bake a wedding cake if they don’t want to.

      And to those other “libertarians” who want to force some business practice on Lego because they think they have a better idea how to run their business for them, FU too. I thought this was a place where we championed letting the market correct business mistakes?

  26. Go all out. Outlaw Legos so this tragedy will never again destroy a child’s life entirely. This misfortunate child will have to spend his entire life with the knowledge that his mother was unfit and endangered him.

    So, for the children, all toy stores must be outlawed.
    Just to be sure, we should outlaw parents as well.
    And maybe malls.

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  28. Hey!
    An awareness should be created among parents to not to leave their children alone in a public place.
    Thank you for sharing the news.
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    1. An awareness should be created among cops and others that children belong to their parents, not the state or any of its clinging, grasping appendages.

  29. Legos must be extremely dangerous! A 16 year old can work and drive a car, but not go into a Lego store unaccompanied? Of course tomorrow when he is 17 it will all be okay.

  30. Legoland can Lego fuck themselves.

  31. The mother should demand a jury trial and the town where this perversion of justice is to take place should be deluged with information from http://fija.org/ The Fully Informed Jury Association.

  32. I just don’t understand.

    Excluding birthdays and Christmas most of my toys were acquired by me, on my bike, with a little money in my pockets. The Christmas and birthday gifts were purchased when I wasn’t there.

    As an adult there are two reasons I could see going into a Lego store. One is to purchase a gift for a kid. The other is to get a toy for me. In neither situation do I want to have to rent a kid to get in.

    Lego’s policies mean that there are zero cases when, at any point in my lifetime, I could go in and shop at my convenience. This does not seem like a good way to run a retail operation to me.

  33. Private property is private property. If they don’t want the kid’s business, they did the right thing. Let this be a warning to 12-year-olds and their parents to be aware of the policy as posted.
    I imagine the profit margin on pieces of plastic is substantial enough to cover the lost sales should the immature be allowed to “shop” without paying, or should they buy, and later change their minds (sales to minors are not binding on the minor unless the product purchased is food or shelter). Plenty of shop-keepers are happy to risk it, anyway, but nothing says they must.

  34. The issue is the crime the mother was charged with.

    Was she endangering the welfare of her child? Letting him select and ‘shop’ for a toy? … Well, that’s an interesting question. There are two many details and circumstances of the ‘leaving to shop’ that we do not know what are.

    But an arrest? Really?

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