This is a Premium feature
Dilemma abour 16 yo DS(26 Posts)
So, my 16 y.o DS the other day decided to/was talked into taking my car out at 3.30am, obviously not to my knowledge with 2 of his mates. I discovered this on my way to work later on that day. When I reviewed the dashcam footage I found that the car had been driven at speeds way in excess of the roads they were on, sometimes by so much as 40-50 mph.
When I confronted him about this, he initially denied it, until I told him about the dashcam footage, which identifies him getting out of the car at 4am. He then admitted to his Mom that his mates hassled him about taking the car and he gave in. His mates drove the car, according to DS.
I made a statement to the police, and they interviewed DS who refused to say anything about who was driving the car. The police advised that if this goes to court my DS would face the charges alone, which will result in a criminal record and a ban from driving as soon as he gets his licence.
So, what would you do?
I am inclined to let him go to court and face the music, as I want the scrotes who drove my car to get charged with this. My DS is covering for them and won't give their names, so I think he should take the punishment.
The wife does not want him to end up with a criminal record, and if it went as far as court wants the charges and my statement dropped.
Your views, as ever, would be very much appreciated.
Don't prosecute,nothing good can come of it. But come down on him like a tonne of bricks, he could have been killed. He owes his mum A LOT.
Your DS has F'd up.
Do you want 16 year old stupidity to effect him for the rest of his life and what jobs he can get. Follow through with this and he gets a criminal record and can't do jobs such as teaching, health care etc.
You're mad, understandably, but are you mad enough to potentially ruin his entire future?
Personally I would come down hard on him, no more of those friends or any other privaliges. But I would not risk ruining his adult life over this (and court will - even if you don't think he'll go into one of those professions now, he may sort himself out and want a career change in his 30s).
Are you prepared to still be punishing your 35 year old for horrific stupidity at 16?
Just to clarify. I am not in anyway defending him now.
I'm arguing for his far away adult future.
thank you all for your comments.....
My god no I wouldn't deliberately get my child a criminal record for essentially hanging out with the wrong crowd. I would ground him indefinitely however.
Did the police contact you, or did you contact the police? What's his behaviour like generally?
Are the "scrotes" who apparently drove your car really scrotes or are they just similarly misguided 16 year olds? What if your son was the one and only scrote?
As previous posters have said, he was an idiot, but is it worth giving him a criminal conviction that will follow him his whole life? And are you proposing to do that out of anger or concern?
Definitely don't press charges but my god he deserves some serious punishment. Removal of all kinds of privileges and a summer far far away from these kids but agree with pp don't destroy his future with a criminal record.
If you have already involved the police will it be your decision if they prosecute or not?
I'd be so angry with him - it was such a dangerous and life threatening thing to do. I'm not sure what punishment would be suitable.
Why did you contact the police?
If you made a complaint about taking without consent and then try to withdraw the complaint, the police may start looking at other offences if you are effectively giving him permission to drive without a licence, no insurance, etc.
Will you be allowed to drop the charges. Even without your statement if they already have the dashcam footage maybe can they can prosecute regardless..
I wouldn't do it. I did something ridiculously stupid at 15 / 16, and if you met me now and I told you, you'd never believe it because it just doesn't match with the person I am today. Don't give him a record and potentially damage his future to prove a point. Luckily nobody was hurt and he can move on.
But definately absolutely severely punish him and come down on him like a tonne of bricks!
To answer the above...…
I contacted the police as my DS admitted that it wasn't him driving...I wanted those responsible to be held account for their actions. I didn't realise that when we got to the station, DS would not say a word about who was driving.
If he was driving the car alone, at the speeds the dashcam shows, then as far as I am concerned the police can throw the book at him....if he wants to act like an 'adult' and commit 'adult' crimes, then he gets treated like one as far as I am concerned.
Anybody who has an idea about how to 'ground' a 16yo 6ft 1in lad,, please feel free to speak up now. Other than physically locking the doors, how would you keep your son indoors if this was your situation?
Why did I contact the police? You should see the dashcam footage.....
I suspect that without a statement the police would have little to act on....if OJ can get off, my DS wouldn't have a problem.
Unfortunately DS's mother is a lot more lenient and lets him away with more than I would...he already has his phone back, and has had mates back in the house....I would happily string him up from the rafters.....the thing that gets to me is the complete lack of respect, and I honestly don't know where this has come from....he has grown up in a happy house, with parents in a stable loving relationship, who have supported him throughout his life....I just don't get it!!! I cannot begin to imagine what my Dad would have done to me if I had done the same thing, but then I would never have done this, out of respect for my Dad.
Actually I would let it go to court. If you back down on this he will k ow he can do anything. I'd be having a chat with your wife too as it's outrageous that he's got phone back/friends around.
He could have killed someone. He needs to be punished.
Is he repentant? I would suggest not just a loss of privileges, pocket money etc but extra chores and volunteering in the community to give him a focus away from these so called friends. I would also contact the friends parents. But I wouldn't press charges if I believed they wouldn't repeat it
Your problem here is your wife if his bad behaviour doesn't even get punished!
Have you spoken to the parents of his friends?
You and your wife need to get on the same page. All privileges taken away and some community work just for starters. I also wouldn't be giving him driving lessons when he turns 17. He can get a job and pay for them himself when he's learnt his lesson.
I’m not sure about the charges thing as the others have a point regarding a record for life. However, if he tells the truth he’ll be ok I hope. I’m not a legal bod though and I’d get some advice from a solicitor.
As for your wife letting his friends back in etc. that is not on. He needs to show he’s sorry, be contrite, etc not continue his social life with these boys. I would also get him to do volunteering.
I see where you're coming from with the seriousness of it - but how could you do that to your own DS when nothing ultimately happened ? I'm aware you're angry about what could have happened and that was extremely serious but like the others say how could you consider letting your son get a criminal record for something the didn't even do ?I'm wit your wife though would be grounding him for a long time
Honestly I don’t know what possessed you to go to the police.
It reads like you care more about your property (the car) than you care about your son's future.
I reckon I'm one of the hardest tough love types on MN, but I pale into shade compared to OP. No, I could not do that to my kid. I'd be disappointed, I'd find other ways to remove something from him (privileges, money, certain types of opportunities), but I wouldn't be out to pressure them into choosing between being a grass or ruining their future. No way.
With teens... you need to leverage your influence to guide them to make good decisions. You already figured out that you can't force him to do stuff. If he damaged your car (doesn't sound like it) then he could make amends in other ways. Not by satisfying your bloodlust to see the scrotes be punished.
You can ground him by threatening that if he doesn't adhere to it he is down the police station and that's it.
Here in lreland recently there was a horrific accident where guys like that took parents car and one was killed and others badly injured.Could you show him stories like that or arrange for him to go to a rehab unit where accident victims are recovering.
But l wouldn't press charges. These kids grow up, cop on and become good citizens.
Please login first.