guys are so wonderful. Here’s a note from Nicole, the Florida mom:
I started crying when I got that email [from Go Fund Me]. It feels like a dream, I needed this help so very bad, it is a little easier to relax today and just have fun with my son knowing I can pay the water & electric this week, my water is due for shut off on the 19th, this is such a blessing and thanks to all of you. I can not thank you enough for helping us!
UPDATE: Nicole’s “Go Fund Me” account that was working yesterday (Friday) and then was NOT working Saturday is now BACK TO WORKING! Hooray! – L
Here’s a note from Florida mom Nicole Gainey who was arrested, handcuffed, taken to the local jail, fingerprinted, searched and held for seven hours for the “crime” of letting her son, 7, walk half a mile to the local park this past summer.
But if her legal ordeal is over, her emotional and financial ones are not. Here’s a note I got from Nicole (edited down):
Dear Lenore: I am the mother that got arrested July 26 for letting my son son walk to the park that is closer than his school by himself, and since my arrest our lives have changed for the worse.
My son was 7 at the time, now he’s 8. He walked to our neighborhood park half mile from my home on a Saturday afternoon about 4 p m for an hour. He had his own cell phone, he had been going there all that summer, and some nosy busybody at the community pool that’s on the way called the cops, due to him looking too young to be by himself.
So then the police picked up my son at the playground and placed him in the cop car while they went to talk to the people at the pool. Then they came to my home and never told me he was in back of the car, and arrested me. It wasn’t until they were putting me in the back of the car that I found out that my son was in there this whole time, like he was a criminal.
As he got out & walked past me he tells me, “I’m sorry mommy. I wanted to go play at the park” — thinking it was his fault. Since then, the charge was not filed but I can not get a job anywhere, I think due to this, and I am struggling very bad. Also my son used to be a carefree outgoing little boy. Everything has changed.
Thank you for sharing my story when it happened. A lot of readers were on my side. Well, I was wondering if you will put my Go Fund Me link on your page. If anyone can help even a small bit, my children and I will be very grateful. Please tap to donate. – Nicole
I am very happy to put this link on my page for Nicole. But let me reiterate for all of us that the reason this story went national is that it is RARE. When I publish stories like this here, it is first off, to support the parents. Secondly, it is to incite the kind of national outrage needed to make sure cops STOP DOING THIS!
The same way crazy stories about kids getting suspended for Pop Tart guns and sporks have made Americans deeply skeptical of Zero Tolerance laws, stories of parents arrested for giving their kids a bit of freedom have made the country start wondering: Why is the government telling loving parents how to raise their kids?
So do no freak out about possibly getting arrested if you send your kids outside. The odds are vastly on your side. And so, increasingly, is the country. – L.