Here is what allegedly happened.
The kid was crying. Roger got mad. He told the child’s mother “If you can’t shut that kid up I’ll do it for you.” Child continues to cry. So Roger allegedly slapped the kid four times. Then he allegedly told her mom, “See? I told you I’d shut her up.” Here is a video with CNN’s Rick Sanchez describing the tale in more detail.
Embedded video from <a href=”http://www.cnn.com/video” mce_href=”http://www.cnn.com/video”>CNN Video</a>
The story points out that “The child’s mother says she does not know the suspect.” Does that mean if she did, this would be acceptable behavior? I suppose not but it is more unbelievable to imagine someone whacking a kid they don’t know four times. (Hitting them at all is bad enough but four times… well, once would be bad. Four times is just worse.) CNN’s Sanchez asks “What would you do?” If he means what would you do in the presence of a crying child, in my case I either sympathize, since it could be my kid, or I become quietly annoyed, depending on my mood. Either way I wouldn’t hit the kid. I don’t even hit my own children. If he means what would you do about the man who was hitting the child, I hope I would do what the Walmart patrons did, which is hold him down until security came and took him away.
Roger Stephens is 61 years old and has been charged with “first-degree cruelty to children.” I guess if he only hit her once that would be second-degree? And if he just called her a crybaby that’s third? Sorry, not funny. If the charges are true, I hope they throw the book at the guy.
Source: CNN (and thanks to Katy for the tip)