Serious repercussions for letting your child walk half a mile alone (less than 10 minutes)

  1. Ya the mandatory minimum sentence of two years is also batshit insane. If that wasn't the case she might have chosen to fight it, thinking even if she did lose the judge would see how crazy it all is and given her probation.

  2. Surely it’s on the police to make it safe for 8 year old children to walk home. In any good country it would be perfectly safe to do so

  3. With such a huge gap between the plea deal consequence and the minimum guilty charge consequence, she never had a fair trial.

  4. 99% of cases end in plea deals because even if there is a 90% chance you win and are right, you get 10 years in prison if you lose. Instead you could take 3 months for a guilty plea.

  5. While we all know sex trafficking is horrible I feel like it's turned into the Satanic Panic from the 80s all over again. Woman on one of my local facebook pages kept posting about human trafficking awareness and repeatedly stated the FBI ranked us as the number 3 state for trafficking. I tried to do my own research and came up empty handed. I politely asked her where she was getting that information and at first all she would say was "the FBI". I kept asking exactly how/where she was getting that information and she couldn't provide any sources. It seemed like she stopped doing it, but being an alarmist like that and getting innocent people in trouble is pretty fucked up.

  6. Sounds like yet another case of cops on a self-inflated ego-high, interpreting laws strictly that were never intended to be used that way.

  7. Pleasing guilty to avoid a worse outcome is common in USA. She probably doesn’t have money or time and was worried about losing her job or house.

  8. This is my experience with Texas and its police with the court system. It's all kinds of fucked up, confusing and why I'm never going back.

  9. Of note, the sex trafficking was from Asian trafficked women through Asian restaurants and a massage parlor.

  10. But also why are they harassing a mom about the potential for kidnapping and sex trafficking.... Instead OF ACTUALLY going after the kidnappers and sex traffickers......

  11. I live in Texas and was letting my second grader walk a half mile home from school last year when he was seven. Another really stupid thing about Texas law is that when kids are 17 they can’t be considered runaways anymore. If you call the cops to bring them back then nope but you are still responsible for anything that they do until they’re 18. How the hell does that make sense? I had a coworker who was on pins and needles for a year and they celebrated when their daughter finally turned 18 and they didn’t have to worry about it anymore. She kept running off and ended up in Tennessee for a while.

  12. Ohhh. I love the US... the land of the FREE. Where the citizens can live without the tyranny of the government and raise their children however they like.

  13. Ridiculous how Texans are ways talking about freedom and they lock people up for pot, medical procedures and now kids doing what kids have done for decades. Walk home from school or play unattended. They love to shit on California but we have No law against letting your kids not be helicopter parented.

  14. Moral of the story. STFU when talking to police. Get a lawyer. Always plead not-guilty. Always ask for a speedy trial, it is your constitutional right.

  15. oh, yeah, you have to prostrate yourself in front of police and show them all the respect. just fucking agree with everything they say and make sure to call them sir.

  16. But also why are they harassing a mom about the potential for kidnapping and sex trafficking.... Instead OF ACTUALLY going after the kidnappers and sex traffickers......

  17. That's so sad. I know a few people that don't have people in their lives to help them make decisions like this. This lady fell through the education cracks and it shows.

  18. Meanwhile, in Norway parents are discouraged from walking their kids to school so the kids can learn independence. This concept kind of freaked me out when I first moved there from Italy because it's dark out when school starts (and sometimes ends) and those little fuckers are out there crossing roads (with their reflective vests and bands, thankfully) but it was nerve wracking for me as a driver. Newly arrived foreign parents can be seen walking far behind their kids, keeping them in eyesight but far enough to not be walking them.

  19. In Denmark, kids ride or walk to the school in all weather conditions. It will be sideways raining and kids will still be waiting for the friends so they can ride together. They just use reflective gear and lights are mandatory.

  20. Haha was just going to comment this. I moved to Norway 4 years ago and its awesome seeing kids independently going to and from school. For once I'm actually excited to have kids with my wife since that burden is wiped from my day.

  21. Idk why that's sounds sweet and funny lol. I just imagine a Chinese student walking home alone or with their friends, and like a block or two behind are his parents in like some disguise 🥸

  22. Norway just gets cooler and cooler the more I hear about it lol. Place just seems like a great place to live

  23. I know times are different, but I remember times walking home from grade school (about a mile). I grew up in a small city but most kids 8,9,10 walked home.

  24. When I was a kid, the schoolbus didn't even run within village limits. You literally were required to walk to school, because they didn't do the "parent dropoff line" thing back then. If you lived within ~2 miles of school, you walked or you didn't go.

  25. Yes times are different, we now live in the safest time period in history. We just hear about the "bad stuff" more because of the internet. According to Pew Research, US violent and property crimes have plunged since 1990s, regardless of the data source. FBI statistics, show a drop from 747.1 violent crimes per 100,000 people to 379.4. Bureau of Justice Statistics show a drop from 79.8 violent crimes per 1,000 people to 21. Family and Acquaintance abductions make up about 77% of all abductions. For sexual assault, that percentage is much higher, 93% of child victims of sexual assault knew their attacker (according to RAINN). Meaning you are much more likely to be abducted or sexually assaulted by someone than you know rather than a stranger. Perhaps stranger danger is the least of our worries, and we should focus more on who are children are spending time with.

  26. Uphill both ways. No but seriously I'm only 30 and when I went to school we were walking about 10-15 minute everyday

  27. What happened to the crowd of people that basically grew up without parents even though they lived with them? Y’all know who I’m talking about. Sun up till sun down you wouldn’t see your parents really. I’m not crazy am I?

  28. Called in by moms whistle or telephone of moms whistle. Wasn’t latchkey. We all rode bikes, boards, or rollerbladed/skated everywhere. Miles away. Walked to friends house and to and from school since kindergarten. I sometimes think “I wish I had more help from my parents with my kids, like any help at all” and then I think, they weren’t even really there when I was a kid. They have no idea what they doing. Lol parenting must have been something! As I’m trying to get my kids to go play in their playroom so I can have a few minutes alone of my 24hr parenting shift. Oof. Anyway, we’re here and laughing at this. But it’s Texas. And the state is just full of laugh so I don’t cry things.

  29. That was me, and my three sibs. From 4th grade on. You also didn’t have to wear seat belts or bike helmets. You could ride in the back of a pickup truck. You could bike a few miles with your friends after school. Go to the parks by yourself.

  30. Yup. 40 now - I was walking and riding my bike to school a mile away by the time I was in 2nd grade. No babysitter by the time I was 10 (older sister who was 13 looked after me I guess lol).

  31. My mom would literally drop me off in town with my bike and tell me what time to meet her at the church to go home. I'd ride all over town for a few hours while she ran errands.

  32. I place 100% of the blame on the city and its officers. Old busybodies are always going to exist. Choosing to arrest and choosing to prosecute something so ludicrous are terrible decisions people with power made.

  33. Thats what scares me. My neighbor made a comment on my kids walking home alone (7 & 8 at the time). She could get it in her head one day to call the cops for all I know. But then they would have to look into the 15 other kids they walk back with.

  34. verified it was down the street, and called anyway? that's fucked up. i walked home a half mile every day by myself in elementary school. i bet this neighbor lady hated the kid's mom or something...

  35. A good example of why its important to teach kids not to talk to strangers. If he didn't give the address it would have been a lot harder for the police.

  36. So now that kid may never have a stable home ever again. I’m so glad people were protecting the kid. /s

  37. Lol they don't give a fuck about the kid, what they care about is using the legal system to suck as much money as they can out of anyone in the confines of their jurisdiction, and they're ensconced by the fact that the idiots keep voting for them to do it

  38. From age 6 on I walked to school on my own. I usually took the school bus to school, but not always, and came back to home usually by foot, because I played too much after school with my friends who lived close to school. that was ... .8 miles, according to google maps. And many other kids did the same. So... depending on the kid, I think it is entirely possible that the mother did nothing wrong here.

  39. No kidding, I wouldn’t be surprised if that kid never wanted to walk anywhere alone again. Now that the one time it happened his life fell apart.

  40. A lot of fearmongering about kids being abducted has caused people to be paranoid. The vast majority of abductions in the USA are by parents, typically during messy custody battles.

  41. Not just Texas. Many governments across the United States have criminalized the very same way people were raised for generations in the name of “stranger danger” and “think of the children.”

  42. For real. Texas: No government! Ignore experts, let the parents decide all education and health. Kids are too weak these days. Stop smothering them. Participation trophies!!1! Also Texas: excuse me, a double digit years kid walking half a mile? Straight to jail!

  43. This is one of the costs of letting mortal panics like LBTG pedo fear mongering run rampant untempered by reality and accurate data. Reality is an under appreciated constraint on the intrusiveness of government that the small government crowd often forgets.

  44. Home when the street lights came on, that was my rule. Though later in the year it would be when the porch light came on since the sky got dark quite early.

  45. So let me get this straight, kid walking home alone a couple blocks is a heinous crime to be punished, but mass murder of adults and children in a school still hasn’t been dealt with?

  46. So usually I see these “bullshit” clickbait titles and think “god what morons believe this shit” but I googled this one and it’s legit, he was kicking off in the car so she asked if he wanted to walk back to calm down, he said yes, there were pavements the rest of the way but some old lady reported him being out there (she even spoke to him so she knew he wanted to walk back). Land of the free eh

  47. These asshole neighbors are the real problem (in addition to a fucked-up system). A good neighbor would just wave to the kids and let the kids know if anything suspicious is happening. Instead, you see these bad neighbors who find the very existence of kids on their own to be suspicious, because they think Law and Order: SVU is a documentary of their everyday lives or something.

  48. Yeah bc a lot of them are also evangelicals and therefore need to control everyone else and everything they do bc if they aren’t allowed to enjoy their lives, then no one should.

  49. It always comes down to "we want government out of our lives for x reason, but for y reason we're kicking down your door and dragging you onto your lawn in cuffs." And as in this case there's not even any provable harm. It's just behavior that some person decided they didn't like.

  50. Yes especially because they sit around and listen to a 24/7 news cycle always telling them they're in danger of being robbed, killed, or having their kids kidnapped into sex trafficking...even though crime is largely the lowest it's been in many ways.

  51. I belive you'd be doing that backwards: a US state cannot unilaterally secede, secession is only possible with the consent of the other states.

  52. Former Texas resident checking in - you forgot the cowboy hat and Bible. Can't be walking the rough streets of Waco without those.

  53. Yes. We have to pay for a bus pass if within 2 miles and most ES schools in the area are within a mile or so. My kid walked to and from school at that age.

  54. My kids biked to school themselves, since they where 5 years old. Its only about 1.5 mile. Very common in Denmark. The school actively tries to discourage parent from driving their kids to school.

  55. The fuck? I used to walk like...a mile and a half to elementary school in 2nd grade. Frequently alone. Seems absurd.

  56. its crazy, i was out the door from 10am until dusk. If i wanted to be out after dark I had to come home and ask permission and tell my parents where i was going to be doing.

  57. When I started 1st grade I would wake up, make breakfast & bike 3 miles to school. No one home but me. I would then bike home & no one would be home for a few hours.

  58. The thing with parents all dropping and picking up their kids at school is so weird to me. When I was kid you didn’t get picked up unless you had a doctor’s appointment or something. Half a mile was my daily walk from the nearest school bus stop

  59. When we moved and I started walking home in 5th (~10 years old) with my 4th and 1st grade siblings. We had to walk through a ROUGH area to get to our street. Don't tell anyone, but our parents weren't home for hours either because jobs.

  60. And the kid wasn't like forced, I believe he was told to go walk to "blow off some steam" or something after bugging his siblings

  61. Nope, that's literally all she did. Article I read said the kid was bothering his siblings in the car so the mom made him walk the half a mile back to their house in the suburbs, which he had done before as well. A neighbor saw him, clutched their pearls, and called the police. The police apparently picked him on on the fucking block his house was on. Like, he pointed at his house he was so close.

  62. I lived on the literal edge of my school district and missed the bus one day and my dad made me walk to school, it was about a 5 mile walk and took an hour and a half, carrying the full backpack sucked

  63. Parents don't even let kids ride the bus around here. The local elementary school has cars blocking the road both directions for an hour every day when school gets out. So they cut back the busses to save money, but in doing so they fucked the bus drivers. After covid restrictions were lifted they claimed no one wants to work anymore. Yeah, no one wants to sit in a metal tube full of screeching children for a bunch of 2 hour shift ls that pay $16/hr. Who could have guessed?!

  64. In NYC summers, when I was 8 I hung out on rooftops and sat ontop of car hoods eating icees. I would get home at like 9pm or 10pm and my mom would ask "Where were you?!" and my usual response would be "out".

  65. My parents were always up my ass. Typical helicopter parenting but I swear my parents would have gotten the chair too for allowing me to walk places >1/2 a mile hundreds of times on my own.

  66. Since she pleaded guilty she probably can't anymore. They scared her with the possibility of jail time and she didn't know her rights.

  67. In elementary we had three different times kids could leave at the end of the day: Bus riders, Parent Pickup, and Walkers (this included bikes and skateboards). It was completely normal to walk the two miles home from school everyday from like 3rd grade on and I lived in a “bad” area too. People are fucking stupid nowadays

  68. Yeah, I had the cops called on me for letting my kid play at the park alone at 8. I let the DCF officer think that the place I moved from was a very small town and that’s why I thought it was ok. Really it’s ok here too, it’s just suburbs full of old people and law students but I’m not going to argue when my kid is on the line.

  69. If someone’s alleged crime is so serious as to warrant a 20 year sentence, offering a plea of community service is grievously inappropriate. If someone’s alleged crime is so minor as to be correctable with community service, than threatening 20 years is grievously inappropriate.

  70. You’re not allowed to make them walk, if they are going to be gunned down in Texas it has to be At school not on the way home.

  71. This is also the state that allows individuals, like say a rapist, to sue anyone they suspect of helping a woman recieve an abortion after making an informed choice with a medical team.

  72. Here's my advice to all people, at all time: NEVER TALK TO THE POLICE. They aren't your friends. They aren't your protectors (affirmed in SCOTUS decisions). They are the thuggish arm of the law reinforced by overworked ADA's that over-charge to get plea deals to please the DAs that stand for election as law-and-order types.

  73. I live in Japan and I'll see 5 year olds walking back and from school all on their own. Even saw one escorting what looked to be their 3 year old sibling. I thought it was crazy at first, but I realize now it's the US that's ridiculous.

  74. Meanwhile, the Amish kids who live in my area are walking alone about 2-3 miles to school on a daily basis. Rain, snow, sun, ice, whatever.

  75. It's ironic that the people who boast about having to walk to school 5 miles in the snow uphill both ways, and complain that today's youth have it too easy, are the same people who created these rules punishing parents for giving their child any sort of independence.

  76. After the eighties with disappearances etc people just went nuts and children lost any independence. I feel sorry for her. In NZ we are starting to move back to kids making their way to school again in some places, but it’s still illegal to leave a kid alone up to 14!!!!!

  77. In Japan they have a TV show “Old Enough” where toddlers run errands for their parents at half this age. The series is on Netflix and is worth watching a few episodes. Easy to see how crazy it is for Americans to be so incredibly protective with what they let their kids do and not do.

  78. I walked half a mile home daily when I was 9, during the wintrer with 2 feet of snow, I live in Sweden.

  79. If only Texas cared as much about 8 year olds getting gunned down in school than they do about 8 year olds walking 10 minutes to that same school.

  80. I ran home a mile from kindergarten at 5 years old. None of the teachers even tried to stop me. Teacher yelled at me and made me cry, I ran. Was my first day of school ever. I remember being so excited to be there, my older brother and sister had already been in school and I was so jealous. I used to do their homework with them because I wanted to go to school so bad. Never again did I want to go to school.

  81. Here in a more civilized part of the world children walk to and from school just fine. I got a free school taxi/bus ride as the road I'd have to walk was too dangerous and those who lived over 2.5 km away or so got a ride too.

  82. When I was in third grade I walked 1.1 miles to school every day by myself. Also walked home every day with my own house key because my parents weren't home from work yet, they wouldn't get home till over an hour later.

  83. what? in Iceland kids walk alone all the time even for hours the only time its bad is when there is a blizzard

  84. If I remember correctly, I walked to and from school everyday, from 1st grade until 10th grade. My junior and senior year, I used public transportation because that school was farther away. I turned out just fine. Too many Karen’s these days, just looking for things to offended by and complain about.

  85. I walked home starting from kindergarten. It was about 3/4 mile. All the kids walked home. I walked part way with friends, as did my brothers, and by the time we got to our street/house, we were together again. No big deal.

  86. Bro...where I live literally everyone does that, kinda mindblowing seeing how in a different cultuere that would put you in jail.

  87. Reality is that the kid is probably safer walking home from school then being at school, the way things seem to be looking in the U.S. And it's definitely a hell of a lot safer than being near those cops.

  88. At 8 my commute was 2km to school, i biked in the summer and pushed my bike through snowdrifts in the winter. It was pretty normal. it’s unfortunate that the world we live in now is so dangerous that kids can’t have any sense of independence.

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