A mother in Georgia is facing a disorderly conduct charge after allowing her 3-year-old son to urinate in a public parking lot.
Brooke Johns from Beech Island, S.C., told local Georgia outlet WRDW about her current struggle to potty train her son, Cohen, and how that process caused her even more stress during a recent long drive through Augusta.
According to the outlet, Johns, who is pregnant with her third child due next month, was in the car with her son when he started to complain about having to pee. She told him that there was nowhere to stop but the child started to sound desperate.
“He’s like, ‘Mom, I’ve got to pee. I’ve got to pee!’ I was like, ‘Well, hold on,’ and he’s like, ‘No! I’ve got to pee! I’ve got to really pee,’” Johns told WRDW. “And I’m like, 'Baby, there’s nowhere for me to go, and he says, ‘Momma, I’m about to pee in my pants!’"
Johns ended up pulling in to a gas station parking lot before realizing that her son wouldn’t make it into the bathroom on his own. And considering she’s nearly at full term in her pregnancy, Johns explained that she wasn’t able to lift him up.
“He was peeing before his pants were even all the way down, so obviously he had to go,” she said.
Unfortunately, the incident caught the attention of a Richmond County Deputy who approached Johns and told her that she needed to take her child to the bathroom.
“Accidents happen,” Johns said. “What if I would have ran in the bathroom and someone had been in there? What I was going to let him do? Pee on the floor of the gas station?”
The deputy responded by simply handing Johns a ticket and citing her with a disorderly conduct charge.
“Subject allowed her 2yo male child to urinate in the parking lot,” the ticket obtained by WRDW reads. “I observed the male’s genitals and the urination. Public restrooms are offered at this location.”
Now, Johns is preparing to go to court on April 30, just a few days before she is due, where she faces a $1,000 fine or up to 60 days jail time. Meanwhile, people on Facebook are coming to her support and asking why the officer didn’t show more compassion.
The mother posted a photo on Facebook reenacting just how she was covering Cohen up while he relieved himself in the lot.
“What this lady allowed to happen is technically breaking the law. But in every circumstance that you will come upon, during your career, please use common sense! This was not a drunk urinating...this was a baby!” one person wrote.
“I can understand what the law is meant to do... this is not what the law was meant to do,” said another.
Multiple others pointed out the unnecessary detail that the cop, who is referred to as Officer Beasley on the ticket, used when writing that he had seen the little boy’s genitalia.
“I’d be in court asking why was he was staring so hard to see a two year old’s genitalia!!! That’s the real question!” someone addressed.
Johns further explained her side of the story on Facebook, where she also denied that the cop would’ve seen anything more than her son’s legs and his urine hitting the ground.
“Yes I should have taken him to the bathroom. Any other day I would have but this day I didn't have a chance to run inside. It was to [sic] late,” she wrote. “The point of this isn't to bash the cops it is to make a stand for what I did and why and yes I got rude but I didn’t get rude until after I was accused numerous times of showing my sons penis which was impossible. The only thing that was visible are his legs and his pee hitting the ground.”
The Richmond County Sheriff’s Office nor Johns immediately replied to Yahoo Lifestyle’s requests for comments. However, it seems that people are prepared to help the mother get through whatever legal processes she needs to.
“Can we all go to court with her? Can we all tell the judge our circumstance?” a Facebook commenter questioned, while another offered, “I’ll pay her ticket if it’s a financial burden on the family.”
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