A woman says that after she asked a mother — politely — to quiet down her child, they got into a shouting match that later escalated to a knock-down, drag-out fight in the parking lot.
Bree Hajek-Richardson was shopping when she noticed a woman in the checkout line who had a child in major meltdown mode. She told KTVU that the tantrum wasn’t really bothering her, but it was too loud for her to bear, so she “politely” asked the woman to quiet her kid down.
This led to a two-minute verbal altercation that ended with Hajek-Richardson telling the mom to “go to hell.” However, the mama wasn’t done, because when Hajek-Richardson exited the store, she was pounced upon by the mother, who punched her in the face, knocked her down and lay on her for a few minutes before hastening away. The police are using surveillance video to try to track down this Mama Bear, who remains at large.
OK. I have to say this mother should not have resorted to a boxing match when the request came through. But I can totally understand her anger and frustration. Going to a store with a small child is a hit-or-miss adventure, one that is often an exercise in futility. Even if you have a child who is golden and always behaves well, tantrums do happen, and they happen to everyone. And the public tantrum is always a wonderful kind of special, because even if you’re not confronted by strangers, you feel their eyes burning holes into you as you struggle to maintain control.
Maybe her child had been great all day but was at the end of his rope. Maybe they were on their way to lunch, and he was hungry. She could have also been on her phone and ignoring her child, but let’s give her the benefit of the doubt here. In any case, she was in the checkout line — she was almost home free. So she was dealing with a yowling, freaking-out kid when some stranger came up and asked her to calm her child down. Like it’s so easy to calm down a tantruming child, right? Hajek-Richardson actually requested the mother somehow turn down the volume. If kids came with volume controls, why wasn’t I shown where they are? I almost don’t blame her for snapping.
She did commit a crime, and if caught, she will face charges — Hajek-Richardson visited the ER and was released, but she suffered mouth injuries and may lose a tooth. The mother’s actions were wrong, and she should be punished, and it’s even more condemnable if her child witnessed his mother’s violence. But I admit there is a little part of me who would have silently cheered this psycho on.