It’s fine to be creepy and kooky, mysterious and spooky, but the Addams family’s parenting skills are pretty much all together ooky -and that could be a problem. While the Addams parents are certainly a loving, caring and cooperative couple who would never abuse their children, the law requires parents to keep their children safe and simply loving your children isn’t a defense to charges of child endangerment. This means the Addams’ could stop being a complete family if someone brought up such charges.
Being Weird Isn’t Child Endangerment
First off, it’s important to recognize that there is a difference between merely having oddball, off-putting children and having children that are in danger. Just because Wednesday and Pugsly stand out in school and write essays about their relatives who were burned at the stake and perform bloody theatrical scenes at school doesn’t mean they are at risk. Even so, these actions might be enough to inspire a teacher to contact authorities.
But Putting Children in Danger Is
If investigators came to the house, the Addams Family would almost certainly invite them in to discuss the problem, although they would be better off speaking to an attorney before answering any questions. Once inside the home, investigators would likely be disturbed by the dust, spider webs and other problems with the house that the Addams feel comfortable with. If they ran across “Kitty,” the family’s pet lion, they would probably remove the children from the home. If they saw Wednesday and Pugsly at play, that would probably also be enough for them to step in, as the children often play by electrocuting one another or shooting real arrows at each other.
Kids do Not Need to be Injured
While the Addams children have never been seriously harmed by these antics, the law does not require anything to happen to children before their parents can be charged with child endangerment. Child endangerment occurs when a person “willfully causes or permits a child to be placed in a dangerous situation.” Playing with a lion, electric chair or crossbow is certainly a dangerous situation and the prosecution could argue that while the Addams parents might not willfully cause their children to be in these situations, they do permit them to occur.
In fact, because the risk of harm to the children could cause great bodily harm, Morticia and Gomez could even be charged with felony child endangerment, which could carry a prison sentence of up to six years.
Defending the Addams Family
When it comes to “Kitty,” a lawyer could argue that the lion was, in fact, well trained, cared for and kept within the exotic animal statutes of the law, thus the lion presents no real threat to the children or anyone else. Similarly, an attorney could show that while the parents do own an electric chair and deadly weapons and did introduce the children to these weapons, they did not willfully allow the children to play with them.
Depending on the evidence presented against the Addams parents, a lawyer might even consider arguing that the behaviors witnessed are part of the family’s unique religious traditions and that they cannot be criminalized the same way some families may choose not to seek healthcare for their sick children due to their medical beliefs. The Addams Family have a history of practicing witchcraft and this belief system may entitle them to continue their offbeat lifestyle with their children without fear of legal repercussions.
Obviously, it would be difficult for the Addams Family to fight charges of child endangerment given their way of life, but if anyone could help them defend themselves against such accusations, it would be attorney Peter M. Liss. And he can help you too if you have been accused of any sort of child endangerment or abuse. If you have any questions or are ready to schedule a free initial consultation, please call (760) 643-4050 OR (858) 486-3024.
Image by UmerSaud