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Boy, 11, Arrested for Punching Grandma Who Refused to Buy Toy

By Aditi Mukherji, JD on December 16, 2013 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Ohio police recently detained a boy who punched his grandma in the face while shopping.

The 11-year-old allegedly clocked his grandmother in the nose after she refused to buy him a toy at a department store in Dayton.

With the "Lord of the Flies"-esque child now in juvenile custody, he should probably expect greater woes than a stocking full of coal this Christmas.

Domestically Violent Toy Tantrum

The minor was cuffed by Dayton cops after a witness called 911 to report an assault in the toy aisle at Rose's Store. The victim, 60-year-old Barbara Weeks, told investigators that the boy tried to land a second blow, but his grandma managed to flee from him, reports the Dayton Daily News.

The boy was taken to the Montgomery County Juvenile Justice Center and charged with domestic violence.

Most people think of domestic violence as only occurring between lovers, but it can actually apply to guardians and children, too. Ohio's domestic violence law applies to an offender's "family or household members," including grandparents.

In Ohio, a uniquely bratty kid can be charged with domestic violence when he:

  • Knowingly or recklessly causes (or attempts to cause) physical harm to a family or household member; or
  • By threat of force, knowingly causes the victim to believe that he will cause imminent physical harm to him or her.

It's unclear whether the boy's granny was seriously hurt from the alleged slug to her schnoz, but the kid's actions certainly meet the requirements for domestic violence. The grandmother even told police that she's afraid of her grandson. [Insert your soul-crushed sad face here.]

Though the boy can expect more than a timeout for his behavior, he likely won't face "ordinary" criminal charges because he's only 11.

Juvenile Proceedings

Juvenile proceedings differ quite a bit from adult criminal proceedings. For starters, juveniles commit "delinquent acts" instead of "crimes," and juvenile offenders have "adjudication hearings" instead of "trials." Also, the records from this boy's juvenile case will be sealed so that his mistake doesn't haunt him for the rest of his life.

Though particularly serious crimes will compel some jurisdictions to try children as adults, in general, our juvenile justice system aims to impose the least detrimental punishment as an effort to rehabilitate juvenile delinquents.

Here's hoping the criminal dunce cap brings the boy 'round and inspires him to treat his Nana right.

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