Assault Conviction Appropriate

Family First NZ says the conviction of a Christchurch parent for assaulting his children is appropriate if it was for punching the child.

“No matter how stressful the situation may be, a parent should never be punching a child in the face,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ. “That action is completely unacceptable and abhorrent to any good parent.”

“As the police and judge have reiterated, this case has nothing to do with the anti-smacking law as was previously suggested in media reports. This was not about a light smack for the purpose of correction.”

“However, there is a concern that Jimmy Mason may have been found guilty for only the ear pull as both actions of punching, and pulling the ear, were wrapped up in the same police charge. If that’s the case, then it’s a decision that does concerns us. We would like that clarified.”

“Jimmy Mason is not the perfect parent but it appears he was simply dealing with an urgent situation with the instinct of a parent who wanted to prevent further injury to his kids and to bring things quickly under control.”

“If the jury believes there was a punch based on the evidence, justice has been served,” says Mr McCoskrie. “Our desired amendment to the anti-smacking law would have offered no assistance or defence to this particular case. We have no intention of endorsing children being assaulted, and nor do the hundreds of thousands who opposed the anti-smacking law.”


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