Attorney Ben Schwartz talks about an article he was sent by a viewer about Texting Behind the Wheel with Kids in The Car. The article is named 1-in-3 parents read texts behind the wheel – Even with kids in the car.
Hi, I’m attorney Ben Schwartz,
Today, we are going to talk about a blog post that I read on a blog named Scary Mommy. I don’t want you to think I am just sitting around reading blog articles on websites for mothers. Someone sent this to me. The article is called 1-in-3 parents read texts behind the wheel – Even with kids in the car. We will link to the article in the show notes for this post on schwartzandschwartz.com. Someone asked me what I think about this. I want to tell you a story, and after I tell you this story, you’ll understand where I’m coming from.
A long time ago, I mean this is probably like 15 years ago, I had a case where I represented a young mother. The young mother was charged in the state of Delaware with a crime of endangering the welfare of a child. She didn’t mean to endanger the welfare of her child, but she was arrested and charged with endangering the welfare of a child. It’s a crime and we went to court. The problem with that case was it’s an adult misdemeanor in a family relationship. This means it goes to family court where you have not a jury trial but a trial with the judge. The judge heard all the evidence in the case and he found her guilty. I was absolutely crushed. She was crushed and she was crying. The judge said, “before I sentence you, do you have anything that you’d like to say?” Through her tears, she said to the judge, “I’m really sorry about this. I don’t know how I’m going to explain to my kids that their mother is a criminal.” The judge leered forward and he said, “Ma’am you’ll figure out some way.”
I thought that is one cold-hearted, stone-cold judge. That stuck with me all these years. I just want to tell you, if you’re a mother or father and you’ve got kids in the car, and you’re texting and driving, it’s not necessarily just an inattentive driving charge that you’re going to get, you could be charged with a crime of endangering the welfare of a child, even if you’re not in an accident. So, when someone sent me this article on scarymommy.com, I thought, boy you know what they really ought to tell people is, don’t tell people not to text and drive with kids in the car. Tell people, do you understand the full import of what you’re talking about. The full impact is, if a cop sees you doing this with the kid in the car, you get arrested and you get taken off to jail, you may have to go to trial, and you may get convicted of a crime, not a traffic violation, a crime. Then you get to be put in the position where some stone-cold judge is telling you that you can figure out some way to explain to the kids why you’re a criminal.
I’m attorney Ben Schwartz. I hope you don’t take this video in the wrong way, but I’m trying to get the word out and tell people don’t text and drive. Really, you should not ever text and drive, even if you’re just checking the phone and reading something. You really should never do that. Don’t take your eyes off the road if you’ve got children in the car, because even if you don’t cause an accident, the consequences can be absolutely terrible. I’m attorney Ben Schwartz, let us know what you think about this topic. Give us a comment. Do you text and drive? Have you ever texted and driven with kids in the car? What do you do if you’re in the car with someone who’s texting and driving? Give us a comment, share this video with your friends and if you have any questions send me an email below. Thanks for watching!