January 29, 2013

Mother arrested for spanking son says cruelty charge unfounded

One punishment was over 7-year-old taking box cutter to school, mom says.

A Conway mother accused of cruelty to children said Tuesday that the charge was unfounded.

Police on Sunday charged Amber Tyler, 27, and her boyfriend Mike McDaniel, 29, with cruelty to children. The pair were released from jail the same day and were told not to have contact with the 7-year-old child who she said is currently in the custody of his grandmother.

According to an Horry County police report, the child told authorities of being “spanked” on numerous days and was told to lie on his bed while being “spanked” with a belt and shoe by both suspects. Police also reported that bruises were observed on the child’s shins and buttocks.

Tyler said her son was spanked for misbehavior, but she didn’t think it warranted charges.

She said the 7-year-old was spanked three times with a belt on his bottom when he was suspended from school for bringing a box cutter on school property. The second spanking shortly after was with a flip flop, again three times on his buttocks. Tyler said that spanking was because her son was screaming at his babysitter who had taken a toy away.

“I’m sorry that I spanked my son at this point in time, but if he brought another razor blade to school I’d spank him again,” Tyler said. “What if another child had been hurt? How guilty would I feel then? It’s not fair to throw a parent under the bus just because they disciplined their child.”

Tyler said she resorted to spanking because privileges like TV and time with his friends outside school had already been taken away.

“I’m a good mom,” she said. “I’ve just got a son that’s acting out.”

Tyler said she believes the court will clear her name and McDaniels when the case is presented in February.

“This has been blown way out of proportion,” she said. “This is the problem with society. This is what happens when you try to discipline your child these days.”

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