Kid draws pic of gun @ school, then dad gets arrested
Daddy, are you mad at me?
Those were the first words out of the mouth of a scared little girl to her father when he was released this week after being charged with possession of a firearm because of a picture she drew at school of a man holding a gun — which turned out to be a toy.
On Wednesday police in Waterloo, Ont., arrested Jessie Sansone, 26, a resident of nearby Kitchener, when a teacher at his daughter's school voiced concern over the drawing, Insp. Kevin Thaler of Waterloo Regional Police told Postmedia News.
The school contacted Family and Children's Services, which then called police, said Thaler.
During questioning, Thaler said the child, along with her siblings, provided police with a "detailed description" of a gun that was stored in the home and was accessed by the children.
"The kids were scared," said Thaler. "It is a four-year-old that we're taking the information from, but the fact is that this disclosure was very descriptive and very alarming to the officers investigating this."
It was a typical day for Sansone, who had no idea when he arrived at Forest Hills school to pick up his children, including four-year-old daughter Neaveh, that three police officers were waiting to arrest him.
Informed he was under arrest for possession of a firearm, Sansone said he never was told the details of why he was being arrested.
Thaler said the arrest was made "because it was the end of a school day."
"The officers' concern was . . . the need to secure and locate the firearm," he explained.
While he sat in a police cell, Sansone said officers took his wife, Stephanie, who is pregnant, and his four children to the station for more questioning.
At some point during the investigation, police became aware that the gun was a toy pistol, information that was confirmed when they found it in the family's home later that day, said Thaler.
"The child had every belief it was real," said Thaler. "The indication from the kids was that it was dad's (gun)."
Sansone denied that his children thought the gun was real or belonged to him.
"It's a toy pistol," he said. "It's completely transparent. It doesn't even resemble a real gun, at all."
Police released Sansone about four hours later, said Thaler.
"The first thing my daughter said when I saw her was, 'Daddy are you mad at me?' " recalled Sansone. "That sums it up to me."
On Friday, Sansone said his name has been slandered by the incident. He said he was upset with how all the authorities involved handled it.
He said his daughter told her teacher the man in her picture was her father, and that he used the gun to "shoot bad guys and monsters."
He said he doesn't think the picture was inappropriate or should have raised concern for the school.
"I think every little girl, their dad should be their hero," he said. "Their daddy is their hero, is their protector, and that's what daddies should do in a little girl's eyes. (They) protect the house and make sure the bad guys or the monsters don't hurt them."
The school should have told him about the picture before calling Family and Children's Services, said Sansone.
"Nobody should take what a four-year-old says to that extreme anyways, especially if you are in the profession of dealing with children," said Sansone.
While he admitted he has had trouble with the law in the past, including an assault charge five years ago, Sansone said he has turned his life around.
He moved his family from Toronto to Kitchener to get away from old acquaintances, became educated, and started working as a personal support worker for a sobriety centre.
"I go into schools and counsel students on drug and alcohol abuse," he explained.
The principal of his daughter's elementary school even offered him a job once as a counsellor at the school, said Sansone.
"I feel like the principal should have called me," he said. "I'm a volunteer at the school. I'm an active parent."
While Family and Children's Services couldn't comment specifically on the incident for privacy reasons, Karen Spencer, director of client services, told Postmedia News that the agency was legally obligated to inform police of the incident.
"The school reported a concern to us about a firearm in the home and the safety of the children in the home was also a concern," said Spencer.
"The police responded immediately and so did our agency, and I think it's fair to say that we err on the side of safety. . . . In our work, the safety of the child is always paramount."
On Friday, Waterloo Regional Police said they were confident they made the right decision in arresting Sansone.
"Part of the message here, I think, is replica or not . . . if the item looks real and it raises people's concern, it's going to draw police involvement," said Thaler. "It's unfortunate that it has gotten this big. But at the end of the day, this comes down to a child's safety and the officers had a legitimate concern. We can't walk away from that."
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ROFL@ THREAD TITLE DIDNT READ THE POsT
in recent times kids tend to be able to do whatever they want at school, like hit teacher's, and the teacher isn't allowed to use any discipline. if the teacher just frowns at a student, the student's absentee parents file a lawsuit. so it's good to see she got arrested, something different for a change. maybe she'll stop texting during class.
I didn't read the first post yet, just making a general statement. faggot.