Father Accused of Keeping His 9-Year-Old Son in a Box Found Not Guilty

When you hear that a father has been accused of keeping his child in a box -- well, you just want to do something awful to him. Things I can't name here. Bad, bad things! Oh, and he should go to prison. Immediately! And let's just cut off his testicles too! Let's not even give him a trial and waste taxpayer money, let's just put a bullet in his brain! I've seen all of these comments and more on stories I've written about parents accused of heinous crimes against their children -- and granted, many do deserve that. But some do not. David Wieseckel is reportedly one of those parents. And it's a good thing we have a justice system to figure this stuff out.

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Wieseckel, a father of four from Galveston, Texas, faced 32 years in prison for allegedly locking up his son in a plywood box after he couldn't control the 9-year-old. Wiesecke reportedly said that his son was extremely troubled, that he was dangerous, hid knives, had physically threatened his father, and hurt animals. But was this just a cry for help from a damaged child who had to live with an abusive father?

That was the son's side of it.

The boy claimed that his father choked and burned him, forced him to do push-ups, and put him in a box for punishment. Police reportedly discovered the box the boy claimed he was kept in.

At the time he was being investigated, the dad did admit he kept his son inside of something -- but says it was his "specially designed room." The small "room" contained a bed, a book, and blankets, and the dad claimed he had to keep him in it so that the boy wouldn't destroy the house.

He also told police he had tried everything to control his son's behavior, including expensive doctors, but that nothing was working.

Sounds like a father who was totally unequipped to handle a child with issues of this magnitude, and how many of us are? It's easy to sit here and judge and say, "He should have done this," when you don't have a child tearing up your house and hurting your animals.

I wasn't on the jury nor did I hear any evidence, so I can't pontificate on whether the jury made the right call, but legally, this man is INNOCENT.

We need to remember this the next time we're ready to rake a parent over the coals because of an accusation. Children can and do lie or exaggerate. Yes, their accusations should be taken very seriously, as it's extremely unusual for a child to make such terrible accusations against a parent. But a child's accusations are not a free pass to lock someone up and throw away the key without the parent's side being heard.

The boy's stepmother faces a trial on similar charges next month. Will be interesting to see if the jury comes to the same conclusion.

Have you ever found yourself too quick to jump to a conclusion about a parent?


Image via Galveston Police

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