Mom Shackles 10-Year-Old Son While She’s at Work But Don’t Judge Her Yet

Horrifying 63

What this mom did to her son is so, so wrong. And yet ... I feel bad for her. Listen. A mom in Santa Ana, California was arrested after her 10-year-old son was found home alone with steel shackles around his ankles. It was reportedly a long, aluminum chain wrapped around his ankles and locked with a padlock -- the mom, Irma Navarro, had the key, which she had taken with her to work. There is no excuse for shackling your kid. And yet even the local cops took some pity on Navarro, who works during the day and whose 10-year-old boy had begun getting into trouble. She apparently shackled him as a "last resort," said cops.

The boy was found in a courtyard in the apartment complex where he lived with his mother, with the shackles around his ankles, and slight bruising and redness on his skin. It took bolt cutters to remove them.

Not only is this physically dangerous -- imagine if there was a fire and the child couldn't get out -- but emotionally, it's got to be life-scarring. Imagine how this boy will feel his entire life knowing his mom shackled him like a criminal.

But now we hear the mom's side. Neighbors say she is a good person, a hard-working one who cleans homes for a living, and who was struggling to raise three kids. And her 10-year-old was known as a neighborhood troublemaker who had been caught breaking doors and windows in nearby apartments. She was also worried he would join a gang or fall into the wrong crowd.

But there's a reason kids join gangs. A gang gives young men and women a sense of family and safety that they don't get at home. And this boy is not getting what he needs.

Still, cops seem to feel for the mom, saying:

She's trying to do the right thing, but [the boy is] not cooperating. He gets frustrated, cusses at her. She feels like she’s losing control of him, so this is basically a last resort.

Here is where things get a bit complicated too -- one of her other sons was with a babysitter, and the other was at school. Why wasn't this kid with one or the other too? Was he too troublesome for the babysitter? Was his school out of session?

Navarro was charged with cruelty to a minor. Her three kids were placed in foster care. What will happen to this family? These kids?

Here is what I would LOVE to see: Navarro given some help. Navarro's troublesome son given counseling and after-school activities for at-risk youth. Given a mentor. He's still young, he could change.

I would not like to see Navarro in prison because I think this is just going to make three at-risk boys even more at-risk -- to the point where they become adults that the system needs to deal with rather than kids.

Navarro needs help too. She needs counseling, parent classes, therapy. And where is the father(s)? Are they being allowed to shirk their financial and emotional responsibilities to these children?

Yes, we can all bitch that this mom shouldn't have had three kids if she couldn't take care of them. Hell, I totally agree. But they are here now, and they need to be made into productive citizens while it's not too late to help them and their mom.

What do you think should happen to this mom?

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Irela... Ireland69

And if she doesn't do anything she will also get the blame at least she is trying to do something!

Chana... Chanandler.Bong

I agree that this woman needs help. Therapy. Parenting classes. Support. And I also feel that our prison system is filling up with people who could easily be rehabilitated and function as productive members of society. I'm with you on all that. But I also think that we CAN judge this mom. We SHOULD judge these parents who do things like that. I think for some reason, we have this mentality where if you judge those who do wrong things, they're beyond redemption and lost causes or something. That's where our society is failing. Yes, there needs to be punishment and consequences for wrongdoings. But there can also be redemption and second chances. It doesn't have to be either/or.

Shannon Elysabeth Mundorff

"neighbors say she is a good person." Good people do not shackle their children then leave them alone, unsupervised, for HOURS. Good people find childcare, or take their children to the police station and have them scared straight, or call for counseling, or spank their children and MAKE them obey (not beat, spank) or they make sure they know where there children are, or many many other things that this "mother" CHOSE not to do. To the mom, THIS is what you deserve:


keelh... keelhaulrose

We show too much sympathy to some parents: Don't judge the mom who resorted to shackling her son, don't judge the one who locked their kid in their room because they were terrorizing their siblings, don't judge the mom who stabbed her occasionally violent autistic son... where's the line?

Yes, there are some parents in extremely difficult circumstances. Most get help and manage without restraining or harming their child. There are support services out there, and if a patent doesn't utilize them and resorts to something like this they need to prove they can change their ways before they resume responsibility for their children. It's not okay to send a message to parents that they'll only get sympathy if they do things like this if you're overwhelmed.

And I'm saying this as someone who has worked for a decade with difficult children, including some criminals.

Tracey Scott

Never parented an ODD, sociopath child. Therefore I have no opinion.

LaCinda K Nolen

a child with ODD is hard my 6 year old has odd and he is like taking care of 5 children in one.... I can understand where she is coming from she felt like it must have been her last resort. I would never do such thing but i have alot of support and help with my son. She does need parenting classes on how to handle a child with odd. and he most def needs some help to help him become a better person himself

Rachea Iamhis Reece-peeplez

So we condemn the mom for the shackle but we will condone the police shackle for house arrest and blame the mom for not doing enough and that our taxes are paying for yet another ghetto hoodlum. Wow double standards!!!!

Sarah Ray

This is a shining example of how our system FAILS. We don't pay for Sh*t anymore because of a few slackers so hard working mothers like this one end up doing whatever they can to get by. I wonder if this would have happened if she had a PROPER social support system in place. People so opposed to socialism need to get over themselves and thank whatever god(s) they do or don't believe in that they have never been in a position like this. I think if you had you would think differently. What if she had let the 'troublemaker' roam free? She'd still be on the hook for whatever trouble he got into and people would be outraged about that spouting ridiculousness like "Where was the mother?" Out supporting 3 kids that's what she was doing! I'm glad the police showed sense and had mercy. I in no way think what she did was right, but I think also that she must have been failed by society in a lot of ways before this happened.

Elizabeth Karma Eastman Aultman

People have no idea how hard it is to raise kids ( especially boys from 10-15) by yourself. I was always lucky enough to have a job that allowed me to stay home when one of mine needed it. If your child is suspended from school, and you have to work or loose the job that supports all of you - what do you do? While I don't think this is a good idea - I can see her desperation. Why don't we have some type of assistance program for single parents who work for basically minimum wage and either spend half their pay check on child care or let them run and take the consequences.

Tammy Hickman Naylor

they should put him in a summer program so he will stay busy with her other children -it seems she has no help from a husband or the childrens father-she should not be in trouble she was desprate


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