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Topic : 12/22 Parents Falsely Accused

Number of Replies: 476
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Created on : Friday, September 12, 2008, 01:20:40 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard1
(Original Air Date: 09/18/08) Could you be guilty of abusing your child and not know it? Where are the boundaries when it comes to parenting? Treffly is a mom of three who never thought she would be accused of breaking the law. But that's exactly what happened when she left her daughter in the car to do an errand just 30 feet away. Treffly's case sparked a flurry of opinions and heated debates across the country. People in the community and a criminal defense attorney weigh in. And find out what Dr. Phil thinks about Treffly's encounter with the law. Then, Lynn says her biggest regret is leaving her daughter alone the night the 13-year-old died. Find out how a false allegation landed her behind bars. Her conviction was overturned, and Lynn became the first woman in U.S. history to be cleared by DNA evidence. Hear how the truth came to light and what life has been like since she was released from prison. And, hear about Lynn's son, Ed's, experience growing up in foster care as a result of his mother's incarceration. What can mother and son do to rebuild their bond? Find out what you can do to improve the lives of children in the foster care system. Plus, don't miss the steps you need to take if you're wrongly accused of a crime. Join the discussion.

Find out what happened on the show.

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September 18, 2008, 12:32 pm CDT

Kids in Cars

NEVER EVER leave a child in a car. Both my children were either run over or hit by a runaway pickup truck.  In 1995 2 young children were left alone in the truck within full view of their father who was talking to a neighbor.  One of the children was playing with the shift and the car rolled down a driveway and hit  both  kids who were walking up the steep driveway with their friend.  One daughter went around the wheel well and the other was knocked down between the 4 tires under the truck. Their friend escaped injury. Thankfully the angels were there that day and they survived with minor injuries. If it had been a car, I'm quite sure they would not be alive and well today. My friend never learned from my incident because her 3 year old son Sean would later put a car in reverse while waiting for his mother to load his little brother in the car. The car rolled backwards and hit a stone wall. Luckily, Sean was fine.
September 18, 2008, 12:34 pm CDT

real parents

Sometimes it amazes me when we do not give a person the benefit of the doubt. Should a parent leave a child alone in the car..No! Should a parent yell at their child...No!  Do we as parents do these things it depends on the degree and the results.


When Iuse to drive my kids to two different schools, I would repeatly leave one in the car while I walked the other to the front door; however, if I did not have line of sight, they both were taken out of the car. There were times ,when it was raining hard, that I violated this rule. Does this make me a bad parent? I think not.

September 18, 2008, 12:34 pm CDT

Northern Kentucky/Cincinnati

In the past year -- one last year and one this past July or August -- two different school teachers left there children in the car in the school parking lot for 8+ hours.  Both babies died.  What do your think happened to them.  NOTHING.  Proscecutors declined to prosecute because both woman FORGOT they left their children in the car.  How someone can actually go through a whole day and not one time think about your child is beyond me.  But that's what happened.  NOTHING.  God forbid you would leave the kids at home for a few minutes alone -- you would be in prison.    I will NEVER understand how these women got away with no prosecution.  And I absolutely do realize that they will suffer for the rest of their lives.  But I still think it is CRIMINAL.
September 18, 2008, 12:35 pm CDT

God was watching over me...

My mom left me locked in the car lots of times HOWEVER, only when I as old enough to understand "If someone gets too close to the car, lean the horn!" What she meant by that was if someone tries to open the door or is looking like they might blow the horn. What usually happened though was the horn blew because I thought she was taking too long(five minutes in long to a kid lol) She would have never left me in the car as a toddler though.

I'm waiting someone to bring up for the true story that happened several years ago of the mom that left her son in the car at the gas station.While she was in the store, a man stole it with the child in it and the child tried to escape and was hanging on by his seatbelt and was dragged to death. I remember watching the guy's trial on Court TV. That makes me NOT want to leave my future kids in the car.

I know it's hard being a mom as my mom was a single one, but you have to put be willing to put inconvenience aside and put common sense and parental responsibility first.

That's just as bad as the parents that go to a store that has toys and video games like Walmart for example and they let the kids run wild in the toy section while they are all the way across the store just so they don't have to hear whining. People need to think about these things before they lay down and make babies they WILL whine, they WILL cry at some point and you have to deal with it.

September 18, 2008, 12:36 pm CDT

09/18 Parents Falsely Accused?

Quote From: rhawkins08

I am wondering if all these people that think it is SO WRONG to leave your children in the car within sight have ever had a sleeping child in a car, while in the middle of a Michigan snow storm??  If you work full time, then your kids are in child care, so you are forced to do errands during a lunch hour (if you get one) and then you have to run home and get dinner and bedtime started.  And then the stay at home mothers usually don't have relief until the husband comes home (which is usually late), so when can errands be done??????  Running around with a baby and toddler isn't always the easiest thing in the world, some people should try it sometime.....

I have 3 children - now 22, 20 and 16 and never once did I leave them unattended in a car. 

What has a snow storm got to do with leaving your child, that you chose to bring into this world, in a car by themselves.

You chose to have the children, so "running around with a baby and a toddler " is something you should have been used to doing.

Do not play God with your childrens lives - never leave them in a car.

September 18, 2008, 12:39 pm CDT

She should not have been arrested....

I think they took it too far though with arresting the woman I'm sure there is a category on a ticket that could have been issued to her.

I bet she won't do it again though....

September 18, 2008, 12:40 pm CDT


I am shocked at how judgmental these people are being.  According to them I should have my child taken away because I go pay for gas while my 2 year old is FINALLY asleep in his car seat.  I can't imagine a single thing that could happen to him while he is locked in a car, asleep and strapped into a car seat for a minute or less.  Unless there was a bad guy waiting to break open the window and steal a 2 year old the second I stepped out of the car.  I bet it would take him longer than that to figure out how to open my complicated carseat straps and I am just not that neurotic and paranoid.  And the woman who said she wouldn't get out of her car to put a letter in a mailbox while her kids are in the car?  I don't even know what to say about that.  She obviously has a lot of time on her hands.  Arresting that woman was a waste of taxpayer money and police time that should be used on real criminals.  Why don't they go around arresting people who smoke in their houses?  I've never heard of that happening.
September 18, 2008, 12:41 pm CDT

What Is the law?

Dr. Phil,

I live in hot Florida.I often go to the bank to the outdoor ATM machine, in the bank parking lot. I Park my car in front of the ATM machine, about 10' away.I keep the car running with the front driver window open and leave my 4 years old daughter in the car, we can see each other at all time.It never came across my mind that I might do something against the law! What is the law?

Thank you for your response.

September 18, 2008, 12:41 pm CDT

yes it is wrong

anything can happen someone can jump in your car and still it someone can hit your car you have to remember you and your child are not the only 2 in the world and bad things do happen
September 18, 2008, 12:47 pm CDT

No Safe Place

I believe that there would be far more mental trauma from mom getting arrested.  Cars don't always stay on roads & a child that is out in the open is just as much in danger if not more than being strapped into a carseat.  As for the unthinkable (kidnapping, predators, etc), the mom's attention would be divided among four children instead of three, making it far more possible.  Especially if the just woken up 2 year old is grumpy & refuses to hold mom's hand or decides to stomp away (don't even pretend it doesn't happen).  Bottom line is:  terrible things happen to kids (& adults) every day.  It doesn't help to have "common sense" if everyone keeps on telling you that you're doing the wrong thing.  I think that butting into other people's lives doesn't let them develop their own sense of judgement.  Further investigation is one thing, but leave the arrests to those who are proven guilty.

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