Should we press charges against a kid?
July 3, 2008 7:25 PM Subscribe
Should we press charges against a neighborhood kid?
posted by Biblio to Human Relations (66 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
We just got back from vacation last night, and as we were unpacking, my 13 year old noticed some stuff moved around in his room. Upon further investigation, he found that a bunch of his prized Pokemon cards and toys were gone. At first I was skeptical, but then we checked in the playroom, and the safe I saw him putting his most valuable card in before we left was tossed on the floor, pried open and empty.
Then my husband saw that the cellar door was ajar and that the spray paint cans that we had kept next to the door were gone. That's when we noticed the spray paint on our plants and stone wall. We also found a half eaten apple in the cellar.
We called the police and they took the situation very seriously. When they asked if we had an idea who might have done this, we were unanimous: Justin. This kid has been trouble for 2 years, and seems to have an uncontrollable urge to take stuff from us, especially Pokemon stuff. He's stolen from my kids at least 4 times. In fact, just last month he walked off with something, lied about it when confronted and only confessed when my husband went to talk to him. 2 weeks later he still hadn't brought it back and I had to go get his mom involved...again. All of the neighborhood kids have had stuff stolen from them by Justin and he's usually in a state of banishment from at least one kid's house. We've given him more than his fair share of chances and he's shown no sign of improving. I know he has his share of issues - his dad is in jail and his brother is in foster care - but I've pretty much run out of excuses for him.
So the cops went to talk to him and some of the other kids and hopefully we'll get an update soon. They asked us if we wanted to press charges when the culprit was found and my husband was vehemently in favor. I'm not sure. On the one hand, my kids are freaked out about the situation and I want to punish whoever did this. But on the other, if it was Justin, we're talking about an 11 year old kid. I don't want to screw up his life forever. Well, any more than it already is. Would having to go to court be good for him? Or would it cement his path to juvenile delinquency? I need advice.