- A father appealed a Suffolk County Family Court decision, which found that he had neglected his son, Laequise P. The facts allege that while at a party, a then 8-year-old Laequise P., cursed at an adult. In order to discipline him, his father spanked him. At the Family Court fact-finding hearing, the father admitted that he had spanked the boy with an open hand. There were also allegations that the father had struck the child with a belt once while they were home; the father denied these allegations. In child neglect proceedings, the petitioner has the burden of proving neglect by a preponderance of the evidence. The Appellate Division, Second Department, found that the burden had not been met with respect to whether the father had struck the boy with a belt. Furthermore, “The father’s open-handed spanking of the child as a form of discipline after he heard the child curse at an adult was a reasonable use of force and, under the circumstances presented here, did not constitute excessive corporal punishment.” The Appellate Division denied and dismissed the petition.
- This past week NY1 News presented a weeklong news segment on the epidemic of Human Trafficking in New York City. Often times when people think of “human trafficking” or “sex trafficking,” they think of immigrant girls coming to the United States who are forced to work in the sex trade. However, the reality is that some young girls, born and raised in the five boroughs, are also being trafficked. The New York State Office of Children and Family Services says about 1,900 girls between the ages of 11-18 are commercially and sexually exploited in the city.
- The internet has provided for a number of ways for traffickers and the “johns” to conduct business. Some pimps require the girls to post photos online of themselves together in what the pimp calls his “stable.” The NYPD’s Vice Squad has been working to identify the pimps and save the girls.