twitter facebook stumble upon rss

Man Slaps Stranger's Kid in Wal-Mart

sign up for the momlogic newsletter Tweet This

Imagine this for a shopping nightmare: Your 2-year-old throws a tantrum at Wal-Mart, and a strange man walks up to her and slaps her across the face to shut her up.

Roger Stephens

Ronda Kaysen: This happened to a Georgia mom on Monday. Sonya Mathews' daughter, Paige, was crying in the store when 61-year-old Roger Stephens told Mathews that if she didn't make her kid stop crying, he would. When little Paige continued to cry, he walked up to her and slapped her across the face several times. After he did it, he told Mathews, "See, I told you I would shut her up."

Mathews screamed at him and called for security. Another shopper stopped him. He was arrested and charged with cruelty to a child, a felony, and is being held without bail. Paige suffered no injuries, except for some redness in the face. Of course, that says nothing of the psychological injuries she might have experienced.

Can you imagine this happening to your kid? I wonder how Mathews explained such a terrifying act of violence to a child so young. It sends chills down my mommy-spine.



next: Jon Gosselin Says He Was 'Abused'
149 comments so far | Post a comment now
Samantha September 4, 2009, 8:25 AM

I completely agree with Jeri C:

“I have kids and on the one time my daughter began screaming and crying at the store , many years ago when she was that age, we left the store. Why must others subject us to the tantrums of their kids? He should not have touched the child but the mother should have taken her outside to calm down and then returned to her shopping. Too many parent s nowadays , allow their kids to run wild, scream for ever, get into everything in the stores, get into people’s way, etc. There is no discipline. It is like we are supposed to tolerate their children because they are “too busy” to deal with them. I can take my kids anywhere in public, including a restaurant, even when they were toddlers, because I taught them to behave and if they didn’t…we went outside.”

I have a 2 year old daughter and not only does she act like she has sense when we’re out and about, I also do not let her out of my sight nor does she get the opportunity to run hog wild around any establishment. When my daughter gets overtired or cranky if necessary I will cut my trip short to keep from causing myself, her, and other further aggravation; if necessary, however the majority of the time we have a little one on one conversation with me looking her directly in the eyes and asking why she’s acting out, how she’s feeling, etc and me telling her that I understand and if she’d cooperate we’d be done in a minute and can go home or where ever else we need to go usually works.

Anyway, got off subject, while I by no means agree with what that man did and would probably have stomped his a** 6 ways from Sunday, I can say I relate to what he must have been feeling and the aggravation. Nothing is worse than watching people who seem to be totally oblivious to their ill manned little heathens; I’m talking running into you, knocking stuff down, screaming, crying, and all the while mommy is in her own world. My thing though is it doesn’t make me want to slap the child to get them to quiet down, it makes me want to knock the sh*t out of the supposed parent(s). These are the formative years people and if you haven’t taught your child(ren) right from wrong, manners, etc by now then you are the real reason to blame when later down the line they become murders, criminals, drop outs, gang bangers, drug dealers, and the like; hell what do you expect when you don’t teach them any better? And no offense but as I said if you miss the formative years good luck, because by the time they have past it’s hard trying to get someone to listen to you when they never did before, to show respect when they don’t even know what it is, not to mention the older they get the bigger they get and you raise them not to care not to respect then watch out because when they get sick of listening to you or you make the mistake of thinking you can hit them or punish them in some way and you get to learn the hard way how it feels to be handled physically by your own child!!

Just remember that while it may be true that you cannot be fully blamed for the actions of others, that people learn by example, rules are made for a reason, and you can’t expect everyone to raise your child for you especially if you’re the type who if someone does try to discipline them you want to show your ignorance and try to start a confrontation with them.

Sorry for the long post I guess I just wanted to remind everyone of why America and the world in general is going to Hell in a Handbasket…..people forgot how to be role models and parents!!

Samantha September 4, 2009, 8:36 AM

Oh and for those so quick to jump to the defense of the mother and to make excuses for the child’s behavior….just further supports why society is as screwed as it is now. In a previous post I mentioned that I myself have a 2 year old, and she knows how to act in public, she knows when mommy says behave or mommy says her first and middle name it’s time to calm down…come on people it’s not rocket science and 2 year old are not as dumb as you’d like to pretend!! But as I said in my previous post it’s not at this age the child’s fault the blame can pretty much be placed on the parents and other role models that are around the child, because at 2 children are still more like parrots they imitate what they see. So all these little banshees and heathens that seriously make me think twice about some people getting sterilized just need look at themselves for a place to place the blame, you taught your child this, you are passing this on for them to pass on, and trying to reason or lie to yourself about them only being 2, them crying because that’s what they do, there’s nothing you can do about it is just a bunch of bull to make yourself feel better!

-Remember children even as young as 2 are not idiots they know how to behave they know right from wrong if they’ve actually been around it.
-Yes, babies, toddlers, and small children will and are going to cry at some point when your in the store, that’s a given, but why should the rest of us have to put up with it???

Samantha (again) September 4, 2009, 9:23 AM

Oh and why should the people disturbed by the ruckus be the ones who should leave, isn’t that a little backwards? When there is a disturbance of the

peace, the cops come and usually haul off the person causing the disturbance or at least get them to stop with it, so how is it any difference in this

case? Shouldn’t the parent(s) with the crying, screaming, etc child(ren) be the one that should leave? Oh and please don’t give me that bull about the

only time you have to go to the store or something else similar because I’m a divorced, working mother that can barely afford day care during the week so

I couldn’t even imagine using a daycare just so I can do peaceful shopping, so I do what I can when I can. And before too many of you leave in a

huff,chew on this; while it was a little hypocritical to say that others should leave versus the source of the problem, I don’t only say that because in

all actuality it is the decent fair thing, but because if a guy has already went up and slapped a 2 year old what do you think some other lunatic might

do, hell they do a lot more for less severe things these days!!?

Just a thought.

Samantha (cut off of post 1) September 4, 2009, 9:40 AM

These are the formative years people and if you haven’t taught your child(ren) right from wrong, manners, etc by now then you are the real reason to blame when later down the line they become murders, criminals, drop outs, gang bangers, drug dealers, and the like; hell what do you expect when you don’t teach them any better? And no offense but as I said if you miss the formative years good luck, because by the time they have past it’s hard trying to get someone to listen to you when they never did before, to show respect when they don’t even know what it is, not to mention the older they get the bigger they get and you raise them not to care not to respect then watch out because when they get sick of listening to you or you make the mistake of thinking you can hit them or punish them in some way and you get to learn the hard way how it feels to be handled physically by your own child!! Just remember that while it may be true that you cannot be fully blamed for the actions of others, that people learn by example, rules are made for a reason, and you can’t expect everyone to raise your child for you especially if you’re the type who if someone does try to discipline them you want to show your ignorance and try to start a confrontation with them. Sorry for the long post I guess I just wanted to remind everyone of why America and the world in general is going to Hell in a Handbasket…..people forgot how to be role models and parents!!

Read more: http://www.momlogic.com/comment-preview.php#ixzz0Q9mUggRx

Anonymous September 4, 2009, 10:15 AM

The man was wrong, plain and simple. He didn’t discipline the little girl, he attacked her. He didn’t swat her on the bottom or get stern with her, he slapped her in the face several times. No matter what was going on with the little girl, whether she was tired, upset because mommy wouldn’t buy her a toy, hungry, or just didn’t want to be at the store, that man should have NEVER touched her.

Skempy September 4, 2009, 10:40 AM

The thing to do in a situation such as this is to leave your cart, abandon the shopping trip and remove the child from the store. We would give our kids fair verbal warning to stop the tantrum and if they did not comply, we would leave. If both my husband and I were present, one could finish the shopping, but any time we took any one of our three kids out to run errands, we did so with the knowledge it might end at any time - and yes - we had to abandon ship more than once - but it did not take many times before the message was heard loud and clear. The saying (that a childs crying) “bothers you more than it does everyone else,” is BS. I love my children tremendously, but I DO NOT want to hear ANY child’s screaming fit when I am out! And I do think parents are becoming increasingly afraid of their own kids, and therefore are unwilling to discipline appropriately; hence the awful behavior.

That said, if any person touches my child without permission, s/he will draw back a nub!!! That man should be jailed for a month of weekends, fined and ordered to attend anger management classes, at a minimum.

Gracie September 4, 2009, 11:26 AM

Parents have to take responsibility for their own children. My children didn’t act like that in public, they knew better. They are all grown up and seem to be doing just fine…tramatic, maybe, but blame the parent not the child.

mark September 4, 2009, 5:00 PM

keep the kid quit or take it outside dont want to here it whether at wal martor on a plane

liz  September 4, 2009, 6:46 PM

lots people dont like whinney kids i love kids but my son would have never acted like that he was well behaved an yes he got his little back side spanked an hes grown into a well behaved grown man kids need to learn manners which i dont see alot of any more an yes you can teach them at an early age an yes your little girl will get worse as she gets older do yourself a favor an spanked her butt once an awhile it will sure save yourself alot of screaming latter

liz  September 4, 2009, 7:12 PM

why should you leave the store then your giving them the upper hand no way an hell would i have left i would have spanke him an kept shoping an believe me he would not have pull that crap anymore why are you parents so scared of your kids grow up an spanked them once an awhile

Kat @ For the Love of Chaos September 4, 2009, 8:31 PM

I’m shocked at people saying the mother should have had control of her kid’s crying. The child is 2 years old. There is no *controlling* the cries of a bored 2 year old in WalMart. That is why it’s called the TERRIBLE TWO’s! All kids have different temperaments. Just because one kid doesn’t act like that doesn’t mean all kids have that capacity.

I will tell you now, the only fault I find with the mom is that SHE isn’t in jail for beating the crap outta this old guy. He’d have been BLOODY by the time the cops came for him had that been MY kid. When he came up with the “warning” … he woulda got two words: TRY ME.

Tristan's Mommy September 4, 2009, 10:50 PM

People, seriously? The child was reported as CRYING, not throwing a bratty hissy fit. Plus the man followed the mom into another aisle before slapping the toddler. He also apologized to the mom and God bless her, she forgave him (more than I could do especially since I’d have been arrested for hospitalizing him). Remember, what he did was physically abuse a small child which is ILLEGAL which is WHY he got, um, I dunno…ARRESTED! Read the report, watch the video, get the facts and stop twisting this story out of proportion and into some unruly child knocking people down or kicking them in the shins..

Besides, if the toddler was throwing a tantrum, what of it? It’s irritating. No one wants to hear it but that’s life. MOVE ON. Deal with it. We’re talking about small children still learning social skills. News flash: Kids misbehave for even the strictest parents. Tell me that’s not true and I’ll call you what you are: a liar. I’M a strict parent and it happens. Family members threaten their kids with me to get their kids to behave, so no, I don’t tolerate brattiness. But it happens to ALL parents. Those complaining were once pushing it with their parents or grandparents. I guarantee everyone here has thrown at least one public tantrum. I threw more than my share despite the strict upbringing (I was stubborn and defiant). It’s what kids do. Get over it.

Does that mean we can slap all you annoyingly ignorant people we come across in the stores when you’re being obnoxious? Why are we limiting scolding bad behavior just to children? I see waaaaaaaay more obnoxious adults who disgust me. Most kids I see aren’t screaming through the aisles like banshees. So relax with the melodrama. Society will somehow manage to survive this generation of unruly heathens even though they’re not *gasp* being beaten or belittled for acting like what they are…children. What excuse do the adults have for acting that way?

Joselyn V. September 5, 2009, 1:17 AM


This situation only proves that Hillbillies are everywhere, and there is little that we can do to stop it – and they get a lot of press. In addition for the information given above, Roger Stephens, 61, was in line at a Wal Mart and in front of him was a woman with a crying 2 year old. He informed the woman that if she did not quiet said child, he would do so. Well he did, grabbing the kid and smacking her. He was arrested and booked. We’ve all though about it, but he did it – and the reason why we only THINK about doing such things is that they are wrong. Still, the person involved in the Man Slaps Child in Wal Mart incident will need instant cash for a lawyer and bail, because he’s up for a felony.

Anonymous September 5, 2009, 10:13 AM

I think parents let their kids be too annoying everywhere! ESpecially anywhere, like movies, church, LIBRARY where people are trying to concentrate and work. They have only an hour on the computers and should NOT have to listen to all that NOISE and thoughtless parents. If they act like this in public, imagine how they are at home.

Anonymous September 5, 2009, 10:23 AM

If my grandkids acted like that (or my children when they were young) they were taken back home. How many times have you heard parents in the store say”if you do tht again, you won’t get your toy or candy”. 20 minutes later the child is still acting up, hitting, and being rude to other customers. Some parents are just too lazy to teach their children how to act, from young up. I agree it was not the man’s place to do what he did, but some times buttons get pushed too far. It used to be in the libraries, that silence was the only thing accepted. Not now!!!! In an AZ. library, a patron told the mother to please stop her child from running around and yelling for over 30 minutes. 7 people went up and complained about the noise as they were trying to have their quiet time on the computer. Do you know what the answer was? “Well, we want to library to be kid friendly”. Yeah!!! Anyway, I am so proud of the way our little grandchildren have been taught to act in public and at home. No, they didn’t need slapping or spanking to do it either. I had a similar experience in Walmart last week, and the mother didn’t care how much we all stared at her after awhile.

Nicole M. September 5, 2009, 11:41 AM

Wow really? I’m sorry but if some strange guy walked up to me and said shut her up or I will I would take my kid out to the car and just leave (after I gave the man a tounge lashing he would not soon forget!!!) But to slap a child? Your kid or not slapping kids across the face is just WORNG. and YES i agree with the psychological issues to. My mom slapped me ONCE and I’ll be damned if I ever forgot it.

Kane September 5, 2009, 1:32 PM

Slapping a baby? That gives the mom a freebie. She could beat the stranger with a baseball bat and no jury will touch her.

Allison September 5, 2009, 2:10 PM

if he walked up to a grown woman in the store because she was talking to loud and slapped her across the face five times this would be assault. child endangerment?? no .. this is assault and anyone who thinks this is an ok thing to do just because it was a child needs to be assaulted in public themselves so they can have a clearer perspective on this.

sharon September 5, 2009, 5:51 PM

Kids are kids- they get tired or whatever and cry sometimes. An adult should know better than to lay a hand on a child he doesn’t even know. Discipline is a parent’s responsibility. Too bad she wasn’t on the pickle jar isle where she could have knocked him upside his bitter old head!

Anonymous September 5, 2009, 9:46 PM

tyty


Back to top >>
advertisement