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Las Cruces parents arrested after sending children on forced march

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mike r Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-14-10 12:14 AM
Original message
Las Cruces parents arrested after sending children on forced march
http://www.lcsun-news.com/las_cruces-news/ci_16060651

Las Cruces parents arrested after allegedly sending children on forced march

LAS CRUCES - The parents of two teenagers have been arrested after police learned that they allegedly punished their children by forcing them to walk several miles home and through harsh conditions.

Cheryl Coffelt, 52, and David Coffelt, 58, were arrested Saturday, Sept. 11. They are charged with one count each of intentional child abuse and negligent child abuse.

Detectives learned that, on at least three occasions between Aug. 30 and Sept. 4, the parents drove their 14- and 15-year-old sons to the Organ Mountains and dropped them off. The boys were then forced to walk back to their home in Las Cruces - a distance that covered five to seven miles over rough terrain. The boys told detectives that one of the treks took them roughly four hours to complete.

Detectives also learned that Cheryl and David Coffelt forced the boys to sleep in a room with no mattresses and no light bulb...

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http://www.kfoxtv.com/news/24990653/detail.html
David Coffelt is pastor of the Mount Zion Church of God. Cheryl Coffelt is program facilitator for New Mexico State University College of Business.
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Swamp Rat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-14-10 12:18 AM
Response to Original message
1. I've walked and hiked that area many times as a teen - it's fun!
I have a lot of family who have ranches in that area, from Las Cruces to Alamogordo to El Paso, etc.

If I was acting like a butthole, I would have had to walk a LOT further than 5-7 miles! :eyes:

..."a room with no mattresses and no light bulb..." - We call that a tent. :D

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CaliforniaPeggy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-14-10 12:18 AM
Response to Original message
2. Oh good grief.
They probably justify it by calling it tough love or some such.

Terrible parents.

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Swamp Rat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-14-10 12:22 AM
Response to Reply #2
3. Hey CaliforniaPeggy!
:hi: :hug:

'Tough love' - That's what they might call it, and often it worked!

My ranching folks in NM are TUFF AS NAILS, and expected me to be too, even though I was born and raised in a city.

I would expect that level of punishment just for talking back... which I almost never did. :D

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lonestarnot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-14-10 12:25 AM
Response to Original message
4. College of Business, MSU. Fuck her. And him.
:puke:
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dkf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-14-10 01:18 AM
Response to Original message
5. Forced march is such an odd term for this.
I'd call it more of a hike home. Kind of brings to mind the stories our parents used to tell about how far school was when they were kids. They made em a lot tougher then.
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rabs Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-14-10 01:46 AM
Response to Reply #5
7. Had the same reaction to "forced march"

Vivid imagination by a copy editor who slapped the headline on the story.



This is what the area looks like after the annual "monsoon" rains.

Btw, the story says the parents DROVE the teens to the mountains and dropped them off. So the teens could have walked back on the same road, I would think.


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dkf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-14-10 01:51 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. I went on a pretty grueling hike with friends and one of the kids started complaining about how hard
It was and I didn't blame them at all. That hike kicked my butt. 4 hours hiking to the top of a mountain ridge, pulling yourself up with ropes along the way.
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Codeine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-14-10 01:44 AM
Response to Original message
6. seven miles?
Oh my heavens! :eyes: Jeebus, we wandered that far many days when I was a kid.

Four whole hours! And no XBox waiting at the end!

Seriously, it was a mean thing to do, but honestly not that horrible. That's a fairly easy trek for teen boys. The mattress thing is worse, IMO.
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lostnfound Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-14-10 05:26 AM
Response to Original message
9. Two round trips to fetch water, in some parts of the world.
At least the boys have each other, but speaking of water, I hope they weren't at risk of dehydration.
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indepat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-14-10 10:04 AM
Response to Reply #9
12. Water a necessity, energy bars would be nice, and snake kits as a precaution
;)
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itsrobert Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-14-10 06:34 AM
Response to Original message
10. Just a walk to School in some places in California
in the districts that did away with buses.
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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-14-10 06:44 AM
Response to Original message
11. on some days my son runs up to 7, 8, 9 miles a day. practiciing twice a day he can double
what these kids had to walk.

of all the punishments these chose for these teen agers, i am not so awfully outraged.
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madmom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-14-10 10:18 AM
Response to Original message
13. I used to walk that just to have something to do. Before I got a drivers license,on a school night,
we would walk to the closest place (a bar with a pool table) just to have something to do, because we weren't allowed to "go out". That was after homework and chores were done. :shrug:
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Dappleganger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-14-10 10:25 AM
Response to Original message
14. It's not the "forced marches" which bother me so much as
"Detectives also said the boys were locked in their room at night with no beds or lighting, and according to court records, at one point, David Coffelt punched one of his sons in the face."

That is definitely abusive behavior. Making them walk home in a four hour period, not so much.

BTW, we have enjoyed hiking together as a family since the kids were small (still in backpacks) and the only thing which seems off about hiking home is the hot summer temps and wondering if they had something on them to fend off threatening wildlife.
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