Police: Woman beat boy over ‘F’
TAMPA – A woman accused of beating a young relative for getting an ‘F’ on his report card was in court Monday. Daymaris Vazquez, 35, stood before Judge Walter Heinrich on Monday, facing serious charges.
“You’ve been accused of child abuse on your 12-year-old son, ” the judge told her. “Looks like you overreacted, tried to punish him for a bad report card.”
Tampa police got a call over the weekend from a man who said his son was abused.
The 12 year old told police his mom did it. The boy’s parents are separated, according to family.
According to the arrest report, Daymaris Vazquez confronted her son about bad grades. She had gotten a call from his teacher saying her son got an ‘F’ on his report card.
In the report, the boy told police his mom hit him with a wooden and metal spatula several times.
“Once we went out, the officer found marks on the son’s upper torso, on his face and also on his arms,” the report said.
The report also said the mother hit the boy with her hand, on his face, causing his glasses to break.
“The 12 year old victim in this case said the suspect hit him because of his grades,” explained police.
Vazquez is from Cuba, and has been in the United States for more than ten years. She is being held in jail, held by mmigration and Customs Enforcement. They are looking at her status to determine if she should be deported.
She does not speak English, and neither does her mother. But through a translator, Vazquez’s mother told FOX 13 the 12 year old has been difficult. She said the boy raised his hand at his mother first, when questioned about his grades.
The boy’s grandmother said he’s hit his mom before and talks back all the time. She says he is smart, but lazy when it comes to school work.
Police say they can’t get into all those details when they get a call about child abuse.
“Clearly parents need to do what they need to do, to keep children in line to behave. However, if it crosses a certain point and law enforcement does get involved, and there’s some type of abuse, there’s evidence, there’s no choice but to make that arrest,” said Tampa police spokeswoman Andrea Davis.
So what is a parent to do if a child won’t listen? Dr. Jillian Glass, a child and family psychiatrist says violence is never the answer.
“Teenagers can really push our buttons as parents. But corporal punishment is never a good idea when it comes to disciplining our kids. For a number of reasons, first, we don’t want our kids to make decisions about how they behave based on fear. And that’s what the fear or the threat of spanking a child will do,” Glass explained.
She says nowadays, parents can take away privileges, like cell phones, computers or social activities.
Dr. Glass says there are a lot of things parents can do to get positive behavior.
“Parents need to de-escalate the situation. Maybe even walk away, for a break,” she said.
She says parents need to understand how their actions can affect the child.
“The most important thing to know is we want our children to be good social and emotional learners. Which means we want our kids to problem solve and figure things out, but also have control of their emotions.”
Dr. Glass says if parents can’t solve their problems without using violence, they need to seek professional help.