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Tennessee Mom Arrested After Letting Kids Play Outside Unsupervised


Mother of two April Lawson was worried sick when her two children did not return home from the park she had dropped them off at earlier. Her children were fine—but it was Lawson who found herself in jail that night.

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After dropping her two children, ages 5 and 8, off at a local park, Lawson returned to her home a block and a half away from the park. When the kids did not show up at home later that evening, Lawson sent a friend to go get them and immediately called 911, only to be told that her kids were at a nearby home and were being picked up by the Department of Child Services. Lawson spent the night in jail and is now facing felony charges of child abuse and neglect.

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Lawson told her local News 5 that she wants her story to be a warning for other parents, as she was unaware that her offense was labeled a Class D felony because one of her children was under 8 years old.

Bloggers across the net have picked up the story and started debates on the merits of “free-range” parenting. Do you think the mother should have been arrested? Do you feel safe letting your kids play alone outside?