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What will help in a 5th degree assault?

My 13 year old daughter punched a classmate in the face because the girl was spreading rumors. I've always told my daughter to walk away, kids can be cruel, but to walk away. Well, she had had enough of the girl's bs and swung. My thoughts were to get the parents and kids together and find out the root of the problem (very long hateful relationship). Instead, girls dad wants to press charges. I've got family counciling going on to help with this and other issues (not related but does manifest anger) and I will be putting my daughter in anger management classes to also help her. She was suspended from school for the last week and cannot attend the first game of sports in the fall. But we were appointed a public defender (which I don't want) and she said that there could be probation, classes, and things like that. I am taking the steps I feel my daughter can learn with. Is there anything else I can do for her in this situation?

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Asked by Nickie2010 at 8:50 PM on Jul. 2, 2010 in Teens (13-17)

Level 2 (9 Credits)
Answers (5)
  • That was a pretty serious reaction on her part. Looks like you're doing what you can at this point... there is nothing you can do to stop the other parents, most likely they are not going to want to sit down with you. You can try... but they're going to be mad. I'm not sure how it'll go over pointing the finger at the girl saying she was at fault. Sadly, most parents are not going to deal with that.

    Still, your daughter hit this girl. She has to deal with the repercussions of her actions. Missing a game, and all that comes with pressing of charges... they are part of the consequences. You have to be there to help her understand that she was wrong. You cannot control others, you can only control yourself.

    Sadly it sounds like your daughter is going to be learning the hard way.

    Answer by HistoryMamaX3 at 9:04 PM on Jul. 2, 2010

  • The better she learns about taking consequences for her actions, the better off she will be in the long run. There are a lot of adults out there who haven't learned this yet. My nephew - who is in his 20s - was involved in an incident recently. He was offered a plea of disorderly conduct with nothing on his record if he paid her medical bills and did some community service. I would imagine she would face a similar outcome - probably even less since she is a minor.

    Answer by karamille at 9:08 PM on Jul. 2, 2010

  • I would add family therapy to your processes.

    Answer by rkoloms at 9:56 PM on Jul. 2, 2010

  • Listen to the public defender because it doesn't matter what you are doing for your daughter, if the parents of the other girl want to press charges they will.

    Answer by twinsplus2more at 10:13 PM on Jul. 2, 2010

  • I would listen to the public defender or get my own attorney. Your daughter can also get jail time. She assaulted another person. She is lucky she didn't get expelled from school. You are on the right track with counseling and anger management classes. I would also add family counseling. If it was my child that got punched, I would be pressing charges too. Two wrongs do not make a right. Your daughter will be learning a very big lesson....every action has a consequence and we need to think before we react. The other girl was wrong to bully your daughter but your daughter was wrong to hit her. Violence solves nothing.

    Answer by tyfry7496 at 11:21 PM on Jul. 2, 2010

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