Baton Rouge, LA — 30-year old Schaquana Spears was recently booked into prison on felony cruelty charges after she beat her three children with a belt when she found out that they robbed a neighbor’s house. Authorities say that her children, ages 10, 12 and 13, were beaten so badly with an RCA cord that it left cuts and scratches on their legs, shoulders, backs and stomachs.
According to the police report, “[She] admitted hitting the child and her two other sons multiple times as they were moving and running away. [She] did this because the victims burglarized a residence down the street.”
A national controversy
Her arrest, however, sparked a national controversy in Spears’ favor where many are saying that she should not have been taken into police custody for disciplining her own children. Many argue that what the children did was a serious offense, and receiving a “whooping” is better than being sent to prison for the rest of their lives.
Spears, whose husband is already in prison, says she wanted to do everything to ensure her children did not end up in the same situation. But the public doesn’t quite see things from her perspective.
Should she be fired from her job?
Although she has since been released on bail, it looks like she will also be losing her job. She says that she has received notice from her employer telling her “basically this has to be resolved in your favor, charges dropped or not guilty verdict for you to return.”
Meanwhile, District Attorney Hillar Moore said his office will review the degree of physical discipline used in the case. He released a statement saying: “The law does not allow excessive pain or cruelty but does allow physical parental discipline. Parents have a right and obligation to discipline and teach their children.”
John Kennedy, Louisiana State Treasurer and U.S. Senate candidate, also spoke out saying, “In biblical times, sparing the rod led to a spoiled child. In modern times, sparing the rod leads to an imprisoned child. If the state tries to keep or take these children away from their mother simply because she disciplined them for stealing, that would be a ludicrous step to take.”