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Thu Jan 15, 2015, 09:21 AM

Parents investigated for neglect after letting kids walk home alone

In a way, it's funny. In a way, it's not.

Parents investigated for neglect after letting kids walk home alone

Education
By Donna St. George January 14 at 9:28 PM
@donnastgeorge
Donna.StGeorge@washpost.com

It was a one-mile walk home from a Silver Spring park on Georgia Avenue on a Saturday afternoon. But what the parents saw as a moment of independence for their 10-year-old son and 6-year-old daughter, they say authorities viewed much differently.

Danielle and Alexander Meitiv say they are being investigated for neglect for the Dec. 20 trek — in a case they say reflects a clash of ideas about how safe the world is and whether parents are free to make their own choices about raising their children.
....

On Dec. 20, Alexander agreed to let the children, Rafi and Dvora, walk from Woodside Park to their home, a mile south, in an area the family says the children know well. ... The children made it about halfway. ... Police picked up the children near the Discovery building, the family said, after someone reported seeing them.
....

The Meitivs say their son told police that he and his sister were not doing anything illegal and are allowed to walk. Usually, their mother said, the children carry a laminated card with parent contact information that says: “I am not lost. I am a free-range kid.” The kids didn’t have the card that day.

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Thu Jan 15, 2015, 09:24 AM

1. Those parents should be thrown in jail!

As everybody knows, they'll be able to provide their children a much better upbringing from there.

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Thu Jan 15, 2015, 09:57 AM

2. I'm for letting the kids walk home. It's good for their health and

growth of self reliance and independence. We complain about fat kids and then
curb walking???? I think tptb in this matter need to chill out. Hope we learn how
the 'case' turns out.

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Thu Jan 15, 2015, 10:38 AM

3. Jeez the cops made it worse + why did they respond to this bullshit?

A "helpful" neighbor had called 911 to report unaccompanied children walking outside. Our kids were brought home in a police cruiser.

At the door the police officer asked to see my husband's ID, but did not explain why. When he refused, she called for backup.

A total of six patrol cars showed up.

Alexander then agreed to get his ID and went to go upstairs. The officer said—in front of the kids—that if he came down with anything else, "shots would be fired."


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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Thu Jan 15, 2015, 11:17 AM

4. "free range" - like chickens or beef?

For God's sake, a 10 year old and a 6 year old? I lived in the Silver Spring area and know the area - at least 20 years ago as I remember it was a quiet, suburban neighborhood. However, parks draw strange elements and the person who reported two children walking alone and the police who responded to that call are to be applauded.
It sounds like lazy and irresponsible parenting to me - a laminated card does not offer enough protection for what lurks on the streets.

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Response to packman (Reply #4)

Thu Jan 15, 2015, 11:29 AM

5. I can see your point of view.

That's not too far from where the Lyon sisters were abducted, and that was in 1975.

Katherine Mary Lyon (aged 10), and Sheila Mary Lyon (aged 12) were two sisters who disappeared without a trace during a trip to a local mall in the suburbs of Washington, D.C., in 1975. Known colloquially as The Lyon Sisters, their case resulted in one of the largest police investigations in Washington Metropolitan Area history. It is "one of the most high-profile unsolved cases in the D.C. area." The case remains unsolved.

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Reply #5)

Thu Jan 15, 2015, 12:10 PM

6. I was going to cite the Lyon's children disappearance

I was living in Silver Spring at that time and it left a huge impact on the psyche of the county regarding children safety , in my opinion. Thanks for reference.

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Response to packman (Reply #6)

Thu Jan 15, 2015, 02:04 PM

9. The school district there won't provide busses for six year olds unless they live more

than a mile from school.

So the district must think they're safe --even without a ten year old sibling -- despite what happened in 1975.

http://montgomeryschoolsmd.org/departments/transportation/rules/riding.aspx#q1

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Response to packman (Reply #4)

Thu Jan 15, 2015, 01:52 PM

7. How come schools require elementary children to walk to school for a mile if it's so unsafe?

They should be bussing ALL children if they think it's not safe to walk a mile between the park and home.

http://montgomeryschoolsmd.org/departments/transportation/rules/riding.aspx#q1

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Thu Jan 15, 2015, 02:01 PM

8. They should investigate the school district for allowing 6 year olds -- unaccompanied

by older siblings -- to walk for a mile to school instead of taking a school bus.

http://montgomeryschoolsmd.org/departments/transportation/rules/riding.aspx#q1

This six year old was much safer with her ten year old brother than are all the six year olds the school district allows to walk to school by themselves.

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