Father requests police presence when spanking child

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As reported in News 10 , Sacramento

A Florida man made the news recently after he called the Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office and requested a deputy oversee him while he spanked his 12-year-old daughter with a paddle.

The father, Dale Garcia, wanted to discipline his daughter with a spanking after she’d fought with her sister, according to a police report of the incident, which occurred on Dec. 29. However, she told him it was against the law for him to hit her, Undersheriff Noel Stephen told USA TODAY Network.

Garcia called the sheriff’s office to ask if it was within his rights and they sent a deputy to his residence. The deputy arrived at the residence and confirmed that it was legal to discipline a child with a spanking.

“(He) wanted me to stand by while he spanked her with the paddle. … I stood by as (he) spanked (her) 4 times on her buttocks. Since no crime had been committed this case is closed,” the officer wrote in his report.

While it might sound unusual, Stephen said it wasn’t unprecedented.

“I’m starting my 28th year here, and that’s been the 12th time I’ve heard of it during my career,” he said.

When asked to judge whether or not a spanking is too severe, officers use “their professional and personal judgment to determine if it’s adequate or not based on the circumstances,” Stephen said. A spanking would be considered excessive if there were visible marks and bruises, he said.

I do not believe in abusing anyone but sometimes our children need to know that we care that they are doing wrong and we care enough to try to correct them. Anyone who does not punish children ends up with children who are not well adjusted and do not know what is acceptable in society.

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