If you’re out driving and see those blue and red lights pop up in your rearview mirror, then you probably aren’t expecting a fun experience. For one Michigan mom, however, she met a good-hearted police officer and received a quality car seat for her young daughter instead of a traffic ticket.
Officer Ben Hall made a routine traffic stop, but when he went up to the driver’s window, he noticed her little girl wasn’t in a car seat. She was strapped in with a regular seat belt, but children her size need to be in a 5-point restraint or a high-back booster, depending on her height and weight. Instead of writing out a citation, he instead asked her to drive to Walmart, where he proceeded to purchase a car seat for her little girl (it looks to be a Graco Highback TurboBooster).
These are the stories we need to hear. He could have easily written her a ticket and written her off, but instead he chose to generously help her and her child. It’s easy to dismiss this mother too, saying that if she could afford to have a child, she should be able to afford a car seat (yes, I actually read a comment saying just that). Advice that she should have gone to a garage sale or Goodwill and picked one up for cheap is not only misguided but dangerous — car seats with an unknown history don’t always work the way they should, especially if they’re expired or have been in an accident before.
I’m not sure what the girl’s age is, but she’s not an infant. In fact, I’d guess she is around 4 years old (laws vary by state — see what is legal where you live). Even though she isn’t a baby or a toddler, she definitely needs to still be in a good car seat that will properly restrain her in the event of an accident. As more and more research is done, it’s becoming more apparent that kids need to be in car seats or high-backed boosters for longer than previously thought and that parents need to wait to forward-face their kids until at least 2 years of age (which, for some reason, makes some moms and dads angry).
The thing is, circumstances can change at any moment. Those of us who feel financially secure can face hardship at any time, and who knows what this mother’s story was? It’s not our place to judge. I’m thrilled to share a story about the kind heart of a police officer who chose to better someone’s situation instead of making it worse.