3-Year-Old Nearly Arrested for Vandalizing Car

toy police carThe people of Woburn, Massachusetts can rest much easier now that police have cracked an important case. This weekend police responded to a call about a car that had been vandalized. After some serious investigating, they found the perpetrator: A 3-year-old boy. His chosen tool of destruction was a plastic broom.

The case broke when witnesses reported seeing the boy on the hood, and sure enough police found “small clear footprints on the hood.” They tracked him down, and fortunately for him, he got off pretty easy.


His father promised to keep him away from cars (what he was doing there in the first place is a whole other matter). The boy apologized, which I really wish someone would have captured on video, because I bet it would be adorable to watch ... and because I could then show it to my toddler to perhaps scare her straight. Because if that's vandalism, then she's guilty of vandalizing my entire house.

She may look cute, but she's a swift and destructive force on her two little legs. There are small, clear hand-prints on pretty much any window in my house, no matter how many times they're cleaned. My rugs are splattered with milk stains, my coffee cups chipped and shattered, and those door stoppers that are supposed to keep your walls from getting banged up are so much fun to remove ... and watch the walls get banged up.

The gorgeous carved chess set my brother sent from Mexico is now a collection of headless kings and shattered pawns. My dining room table ... well, if you know anyone in the Orlando area who does good furniture refinishing, let me know.

I could go on (and on!) with her list of offenses, but it's really not vandalism. It's just her being a toddler and exploring the world, figuring out cause and effect, and yes, provoking a reaction. It's not always pretty, but there's no criminal intent ... at least none I could prove yet. I'm not going to let her go explore atop the hood of someone else's car (if I can help it), but for the most part, I think I'll keep the police out of it.

What acts of vandalism have your children committed?

Image via Connor395/Flickr

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