By Amy Alkon
shared this story
from Advice Goddess Blog.
The Idiots Are Running The Educatorium
A mother responded to an emergency call that her little boy, who has Asperger’s, was having a panic attack in school. She did what mothers do — dropped everything and ran straight to his elementary school classroom to calm and comfort him…and was promptly arrested for failing to check in at the front office.
Law prof Jonathan Turley blogs:
Notably, she had just met with the principal a day or so before. Thus, the principal knew Williams. However, ran up to her in the classroom and told her that she failed to sign in. When Williams noted that she was comforted her child and could sign in if someone brought the book, the principal told her it was too late — the police were on the way.
Let assume for a second all the principal saw was not a women with whom she just met but a blur running past the office. Once she clearly saw it was the mother of this panicked child, why wouldn’t she call off the police. Instead, the mother was arrested and charged. This brings us to the officers who could have shown greater judgment and simply escorted out the mother with a warning. Then there are the police supervisors and prosecutors who could have declined the charge. No one exercised a modicum of judgment in this situation of a mother rushing to her child.
She was charged with trespassing. The school was locked down briefly and a letter sent to all parents about the incident. It was a mother rushing to her crying child.
Turley, like Harvey Silverglate, has written with concern about the criminalization of everything in America. From the link above to Silverglate’s book, Three Felonies a Day:
In Three Felonies a Day, Harvey A. Silverglate reveals how federal criminal laws have become dangerously disconnected from the English common law tradition and how prosecutors can pin arguable federal crimes on any one of us, for even the most seemingly innocuous behavior. The volume of federal crimes in recent decades has increased well beyond the statute books and into the morass of the Code of Federal Regulations, handing federal prosecutors an additional trove of vague and exceedingly complex and technical prohibitions to stick on their hapless targets.