NEWS

86-Year-Old Woman Thrown Into A Pool By A Teenager Asks The Judge For Leniency

Date October 2, 2018 16:06

Cruelty among teenagers is a disturbing trend that often results in maladjusted adults. For the most part, bullied children find it hard fitting in at school or even at home. As for the bullies, their unruly behavior can be a sign of a much bigger problem.

86-Year-Old Woman Thrown Into A Pool By A Teenager Asks The Judge For LeniencyLightField Studios / Shutterstock.com

Author Carl E Pickhardt Ph.D. notes that unruly behavior tends to escalate around middle-school as children begin to assume a level of independence. At this stage, peer influence is the most dominant. Teenagers are likely to pick up habits and bad behavior from their peers in a bid to fit in.

Adults can fall victim to peer pressure

Sometimes, even adults can become victims of teenage cruelty. In October 2017, 68-year-old Nancy James learned firsthand how powerful peer influence can be. The lady who was walking her dogs stopped at a pool party at Players Place Townhomes on Champions Wayand nicely asked the teenagers gathered to turn their music down.

Suddenly, a 16-year-old boy, Leon Balfour Joseph, grabbed the woman and body-slammed her. Then he dragged her over to the swimming pool and tossed her in. All the while, his friends were chanting and cheering him on.

Leon Balfour Joseph was charged to court in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Judge Elijah Williams presided over the case. During the hearing, the judge was quite stern and made it clear to Balfour that he had smeared his reputation for life.

86-Year-Old Woman Thrown Into A Pool By A Teenager Asks The Judge For LeniencyInside Edition / YouTube

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She wanted less punishment

Surprisingly, James was quite forgiving and asked the judge to exercise leniency in Balfour’s case instead of sending him to jail. Eventually, the judge sentenced Balfour to 200 hours of community service and strict curfews on weekdays and weekends.

86-Year-Old Woman Thrown Into A Pool By A Teenager Asks The Judge For LeniencyInside Edition / YouTube

Justice was served in Balfour’s sentencing but many commentators on social media feel like he got off too easy. Even the judge presiding at Balfour’s case felt that the teenager should at least serve time. A friend of the old woman told NBC 6 after the incident in 2017 that James was in recovery from a recent heart surgery.

Nancy James could have taken sides with the judge and pushed for a sentencing that means that Balfour would spend time in a juvenile detention center. Thankfully, the power of forgiveness prevailed. She still gave the teenager a stern warning before leaving the court. Like her, we hope he learned his lesson.

READ ALSO: Parents Warn Other Adults About The Danger Of Bullying At School After Their 12-Year-Old Son Committed Suicide