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Was she punished enough?

I think the mother should have lost her kids for a little while - at least while she goes through a parenting class of some sort.

If you've got a three-year-old child, I would think you would pretty much know where that kid is and what they're doing at all times. At least, that's the way I've always done it. Twenty-four-year-old Kelly Marie Pocock of London, however, has a different method of child-rearing. While she was talking on the phone, her son was elsewhere having a smoke. Yes, her three-year-old son was off in a bedroom smoking a cigarette.

A friend of the mother had stopped by for a visit and went looking for the boy. She found him under a bed smoking. The friend brought the boy downstairs where he proceeded to pick up a cigarette butt from an ashtray, light it, and begin smoking. Meanwhile, the friend filmed the scene on her mobile phone and later forwarded the video to social services.

Answer Question

Asked by lanckn at 5:33 PM on Jan. 24, 2009 in General Parenting

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Answers (7)
  • A prosecutor told the court that "the video demonstrates the boy placing a cigarette into his mouth, lighting it with a lighter and sucking, drawing smoke clearly into the lungs and he seems to do it with some accomplishment."

    The mother pleaded guilty, saying she had never seen her son smoking. The judge, however, found differently, noting that the boy would not have been able to smoke without discomfort "unless he had acquired a habit." He went on to add that "this is an appalling situation and I don't see how, despite your basis of plea, you could have been unaware of the fact."


    Answer by lanckn at 5:34 PM on Jan. 24, 2009

  • Pocock was sentenced to forty weeks in jail, suspended for two years. Unfortunately, the judge's reason for suspending the sentence was that he didn't want to separate the children from their mother. If you ask me, the best thing he could have done for those kids would have been to take them away from their mother.

    Answer by lanckn at 5:34 PM on Jan. 24, 2009

  • As much as I hate to say it no her child should not be taken away. kids are hurt more by removing them from the home they know ans putting them in foster care. Now I do think someone needs to be keeping an eye on them a 3 year old shouldn't know how to smoke.

    Answer by Lyndall at 5:35 PM on Jan. 24, 2009

  • I tend to agree with the judge, it would have been much harder for the kid(s) to be removed. I do think that she should be monitored for some time to ensure that she begins taking proper care of the kids from this point on, and I do feel a parenting class would be appropriate as well. Also, I just want to make sure, it says she pled guilty? It then says that she said she'd never seen him smoking. Is it supposed to read not guilty? I'm not criticizing, I'm just double checking, b/c not guilty would make more sense if she was going to claim she'd never seen him smoking.

    Answer by tropicalmama at 5:59 PM on Jan. 24, 2009

  • I agree with the judge. Unless you have experience with the foster care system and juvenile court then it might be hard to understand why the judge did this. Foster care is difficult on children and whenever reunification is possible it should be done.

    Answer by gemgem at 6:05 PM on Jan. 24, 2009

  • WOW!!! Who knew a 3 year could smoke a cigarette. Wow!! The judge made a wonderful decision however this mother needs some help on parenting. If you smoke with kids in the house you don't leave butts in an ashtray for the kids to get to. It disturbs me the way people raise their kids.

    Answer by MrsTGray at 7:49 PM on Jan. 24, 2009

  • I think the mom should be required to attend parenting classes and smoke cessation classes just to get a handle on what good supervision looks like and what smoking does to the health of the smoker. Her home should bel monitored randomly for butts and cigarettes available to the kids. The child needs and education as well since he is already a smoker. Wonder if he will have withdrawl symptoms. He should be monitored by a pediatrician. I wonder if she is well aware that the kid smokes and just doesn't address it.

    Answer by happi-ladi at 10:09 PM on Jan. 24, 2009

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