In what is sure to be painted by the religious far right as another sign of how America is going to hell in a hand basket, 73-year-old Theresa Collier was arrested in Florida for slapping her potty mouthed granddaughter:
Collier says she invited her 18-year-old granddaughter, Felicia Collier, to her house so she could use her computer to do homework.
Felicia is finishing her senior year online after getting kicked out of Catholic school in Massachusetts, Collier explained.
“She said F-off to a nun! I would just crawl into a hole,” said Collier.
On Tuesday, the newly turned 18-year-old did not want to obey her commands to complete her assignments.
“She kept repeating the F-word to me, about the whole family. She just went on and on and I just got so upset, I got up and slapped her across the face,” she told 10 Connects, “She grabbed my wrists and I couldn’t get out of it and she let one go and she punched me in the cheek here.”
Sounds like Grandma and her granddaughter didn’t spend much time together as it was. She seems to be somewhat surprised by the girl’s actions so that suggests she doesn’t really know her.
Anyway, the granddaughter called police who showed up and promptly arrested the Grandmother for battery despite the young woman pleading with them not to do so and she spent the next 24 hours in jail.
“I went to medical, they take my blood pressure, it was sky high and he says, my God! And I said, ‘Can you blame my blood pressure?’ ” said Collier.
“My wife of 52 years went to Catholic Parochial school, went to church, she’s a good strong Catholic and raised four kids and no one ever spoke to her like that,” said her husband, Walter Collier.
Well, someone has spoken to her like that now. I suggest she either gets used to it, learns to restrain her slappy impulse, or doesn’t hang out in Florida too much.
Because as it turns out, dear Grandma is a victim of the rule of unintended consequences. Here, I’ll let the police explain:
While Collier’s arrest seems out of line, under the law, a battery was committed.
“Legally she’s 18-years-old, so while I understand the difference between corporal punishment on a child, disciplining your child for using poor language, this is an 18-year-old child,” said Lt. Mike Loux, with the Largo Police Department.
Lt. Loux says his department has a mandatory arrest policy when it comes to domestic violence calls, so someone had to go to jail.
“If an officer on scene finds probable cause to arrest a person, because they’ve committed domestic battery, then our policy is a mandatory arrest of that person,” said Lt. Loux, “The discretion does not come because the victim does not want to prosecute. It doesn’t come because the victim has remorse for calling police.”
In short, the kid isn’t a kid as far as the law is concerned and if you go around slapping adults you can and will be charged with battery and if it looks even remotely like domestic abuse in Florida that particular police department will haul your ass in and charge you. It’s that whole zero-tolerance policy showing what a bad idea it is once again. The police don’t have the option of discretion without violating the policy and the unwillingness of the victim to press charges is not enough to keep them from being applied. Which makes sense as it’s often the case in domestic abuse situations that the victims are unwilling to press charges.
The article appears to be painting this as an example of the police overreacting to a spoiled brat getting what she deserves, but if you look at it logically it went down the way it was supposed to when you take the power of discretion away from the police. It’s a reminder that it’s important to consider the rules and laws you set up before you enact them.
Should Grandma have the right to slap a mouthy grandchild? Lots of people seem to think so, but in this day and age of greater awareness of domestic abuse you could find yourself on the wrong side of the law if you do. Best not to associate with them if you don’t like their attitude.