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WTF. My parents would still be in prison for how much i was neglected as a kid.

“Didn’t think I was doing anything wrong:” Mom arrested for allowing 7-year-old son to go to park alone | FOX6Now.com

Port St. Lucie, FL (WPTV) — A mom faces a charge of child neglect after she allowed her son to go to a park alone. She says he’s old enough but Port St. Lucie Police disagree. Now she’s fighting back.

“I’m totally dumbfounded by this whole situation,” says Nicole Gainey.

It began last Saturday afternoon when Gainey gave her son Dominic permission to walk from their house to Sportsman’s Park .

“Honestly didn’t think I was doing anything wrong,” says Gainey, “I was letting him go play.

It’s a half mile from their Port St. Lucie home. Dominic says it only takes him about 10 to 15 minutes to get there. During the walk, the 7-year-old passed a public pool. Someone there asked him where his mom was.

“They asked me a couple questions and I got scared so I ran off to the park and they called the cops,” says Dominic Guerrisi.

Dominic was playing at the park when an officer pulled up.

“They said ‘where does your mom live,’ ” says Dominic.

Police took him home. That’s when his mom was arrested and charged with child neglect. Gainey says she was shocked.

“My own bondsman said my parents would have been in jail every day,” says Gainey who paid nearly $4,000 to bond out.

The officer wrote in the report that Dominic was unsupervised at the park and that “numerous sex offenders reside in the vicinity.”

“He just basically kept going over that there’s pedophiles and this and that and basically the park wasn’t safe and he shouldn’t be there alone,” says Gainey.

She believes Dominic is mature enough to go to the park alone during the day. Gainey adds her son always has a cell phone which she calls to check on him.

“That I’m here and safe,” says Dominic.

Gainey plans to fight the felony charge. But after this she won’t let Dominic go to the park alone. She’s afraid she’ll be arrested again.

The St. Lucie County State’s Attorney’s office says there is no law that specifies how old a child has to be before he or she can go somewhere unsupervised. It’s done on a case-by-case basis.
 

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Sled Head
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Honestly, 7, does seem to young to me to go 1/2 mile to a park by yourself. I don't think the mom should have been arrested though, just informed that it was not a good idea.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Some of the comments on the article are amazingly bad. Mothers of 12-13 year olds that won’t even let them move around their gated subdivision. These people are going to be shocked when their precious kids don’t know how to function on their own and end up dropping out of college and back home when the do get a scent of freedom.

My daughter is 13, we live in a secure gated development -not crime ridden Florida that spawned courtTv there was so much subject matter to do so – and she goes NOWHERE without my husband or myself driving her; and, she must be with a friend or two to use the lake, pool, clubhouse, park, tennis, etc…. i walked to school at 7 … a few blocks away by myself …in the 70s! No, today’s world is the fodder for several of our stations shows – She’s as irresponsible as the dolts that leave kids in cars…in ANY weather. Those of you here thinking 7 is in ANY way *mature* either don’t have kids or shouldn’t. You should spend some time talking statistics with Adam Walsh.
What kind of crime-ridden gated community do you live in that causes you to feel a need to helicopter parent that badly? At 13, I was babysitting other kids. By myself. So you know the actual crime statistics, the crime rate where they live is 2.3-in-1000, compared to the current national average of about 4-in-1000. Growing up, I walked to school, to K Mart, and to the park by myself at about the age of 7 or 8. The crime rate where I lived was about 5-in-1000 (which was quite low in the US, in fact the town I lived in was ranked among the safest in the US in the 80s). Crime is way down, but you don’t feel safe. I don’t get it.
 

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I'm going to go with 7 is a bit young, but then again I'd say it depends on the neighborhood. I wouldn't let my 5 year old run around my apartment complex, but it's also not gated. I was walking home for lunch in the 3rd grade, but the neighborhoods are different now. Sure boys are less likely to get swiped, but it still happens.

edit: I also don't believe they should have arrested her, that's just ridiculous. The cops should have assessed the situation and given her a stern warning/talking to.
 

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A guy on a scruffy bike
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Hell in a handbasket.

Crime rates are lower than they've been in decades. But people are glued to news reports that are designed to generate maximum fear to get ratings and attract eyeballs. And everyone's completely scared of their fucking shadows.

If you want to live in fear and helicopter your children into incompetence, feel free. But to force everyone else to do so, on pain of prosecution, is about twelve kinds of wrong.

We've had a few news stories of this kind of bullshit recently. I think it's time for some backlash -- a Free Range Kids movement.

PhilB
 

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Human After All
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I was born in '86. When I was 7-8 I used to be a couple miles from home with a group of friends wandering in the woods, or out riding bikes on the other side of town, etc.

Even alone it was never an issue to go anywhere in town other than being boring.

The world has gotten completely pussified.
 

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Holy shit. . .I lived in a NOT GOOD neighbourhood and I walked to school every day by myself or with my siblings.

when I was 8 I got a garage sale special bike, and after my parents went with me a few times to teach me what to do/how to handle riding along a street, my ass with across town with my friends, in a city of 45,000 people.

People are FUCKING RETARDED. My brother is scared to let his son do things without supervision when the kid gets older not because he is afraid of how his kid will turn out, but because of CPS and other dumbass shit.
 

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Shop Smart, Shop S-Mart!
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I was born in '86. When I was 7-8 I used to be a couple miles from home with a group of friends wandering in the woods, or out riding bikes on the other side of town, etc.

Even alone it was never an issue to go anywhere in town other than being boring.

The world has gotten completely pussified.
I was born in 85, and you are older than me...
 

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I remember at 9 riding a bicycle 16 miles to go to the base swimming pool! Granted this was in the late 70's but we baby people way too much now. People are always wanting someone to tell them how to raise their kids and live :(
 

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I was lucky, I lived 3 minutes from my elementary school... highschool was a 3 mile pushbike ride. Never had anything happen, ever. The first elementary school I went to was maybe 10 minutes of cycling but my mom always went with me. I think it's because we had to cross a busy junction to get there.

Would you knowingly allow your kid to go to the park alone at that age? In today's world, no. Because I wouldn't wanna miss a chance to crack some pedophile skull.

Okay okay, I'd just accompany my kid to the park to know the kid's safe and have fun:tunes
 

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i walked the 3/4 of a mile to elementary school in the mid 90s, usually with my sister who is 2 years younger. we lived in the city in an average neighborhood.
7 may be a bit young, but arresting her is crazy.

i used to think that my mom was overprotective and she'd probably agree. When we were in elementary school we'd still go to the playground by ourself, I'd walk our dog, ride around the neighborhood on my bike, and they'd even leave us at home alone! *gasp*
 
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