ILNews

Man isn't entitled to parental privilege defense

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In an issue of first impression, the Indiana Court of Appeals had to decide whether a defendant who lived in a woman's home in exchange for babysitting her children would fall under the parental privilege defense for disciplining a child.

In Jason McReynolds v. State of Indiana, No. 82A01-0809-CR-432, Jason McReynolds appealed his conviction of Class D felony battery of a person less than 14 years of age after he spanked Yavonne Wasson's 7-year-old son with a belt and wooden clothes hangers with metal prongs after the boy wet himself.

McReynolds lived with Wasson and her two children and agreed to baby-sit them while she was at work, provide them transportation to and from school, and to assist with homework. He usually asked her permission before disciplining the children.

McReynolds claimed the evidence is insufficient to support his conviction and to rebut the parental privilege defense, which is a complete defense to the battery of a child.

Although he is not a parent of the boy, McReynolds argued that common law provides some custodians with the right to use reasonable corporal punishment in disciplining a child.

Analyzing its ruling in Dayton v. State, 501 N.E.2d 482, 485 (Ind. Ct. App. 1986), in which it determined custodians who are persons in loco parentis have the right to use corporal punishment, the Court of Appeals ruled in the instant case that McReynolds isn't a person in loco parentis.

He wasn't a stepparent or romantically involved with Wasson; he didn't act as a father figure nor have the responsibilities of one; and he didn't make parental decisions on his own or even in conjunction with Wasson, wrote Judge Terry Crone.

However, even if the appellate court determined he was entitled to assert the parental privilege defense, his use of force in this case was unreasonable based on Willis v. State, 888. N.E.2d 177, 182 (Ind. 2008).

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  1. What a fine article, thank you! I can testify firsthand and by detailed legal reports (at end of this note) as to the dire consequences of rejecting this truth from the fine article above: "The inclusion and expansion of this right [to jury] in Indiana’s Constitution is a clear reflection of our state’s intention to emphasize the importance of every Hoosier’s right to make their case in front of a jury of their peers." Over $20? Every Hoosier? Well then how about when your very vocation is on the line? How about instead of a jury of peers, one faces a bevy of political appointees, mini-czars, who care less about due process of the law than the real czars did? Instead of trial by jury, trial by ideological ordeal run by Orwellian agents? Well that is built into more than a few administrative law committees of the Ind S.Ct., and it is now being weaponized, as is revealed in articles posted at this ezine, to root out post moderns heresies like refusal to stand and pledge allegiance to all things politically correct. My career was burned at the stake for not so saluting, but I think I was just one of the early logs. Due, at least in part, to the removal of the jury from bar admission and bar discipline cases, many more fires will soon be lit. Perhaps one awaits you, dear heretic? Oh, at that Ind. article 12 plank about a remedy at law for every damage done ... ah, well, the founders evidently meant only for those damages done not by the government itself, rabid statists that they were. (Yes, that was sarcasm.) My written reports available here: Denied petition for cert (this time around): http://tinyurl.com/zdmawmw Denied petition for cert (from the 2009 denial and five year banishment): http://tinyurl.com/zcypybh Related, not written by me: Amicus brief: http://tinyurl.com/hvh7qgp

  2. Justice has finally been served. So glad that Dr. Ley can finally sleep peacefully at night knowing the truth has finally come to the surface.

  3. While this right is guaranteed by our Constitution, it has in recent years been hampered by insurance companies, i.e.; the practice of the plaintiff's own insurance company intervening in an action and filing a lien against any proceeds paid to their insured. In essence, causing an additional financial hurdle for a plaintiff to overcome at trial in terms of overall award. In a very real sense an injured party in exercise of their right to trial by jury may be the only party in a cause that would end up with zero compensation.

  4. Why in the world would someone need a person to correct a transcript when a realtime court reporter could provide them with a transcript (rough draft) immediately?

  5. This article proved very enlightening. Right ahead of sitting the LSAT for the first time, I felt a sense of relief that a score of 141 was admitted to an Indiana Law School and did well under unique circumstances. While my GPA is currently 3.91 I fear standardized testing and hope that I too will get a good enough grade for acceptance here at home. Thanks so much for this informative post.

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