When a father didn’t discipline his son in public, a drunk man did it for him and is paying the price Vimeo/The Newnan Times-Herald
Vimeo/The Newnan Times-Herald

An intoxicated man was arrested in an Arizona grocery store this week after he allegedly took it upon himself to spank a stranger’s crying toddler.

Juan Guevara Martinez, 62, was standing in line behind James Morris and his family at Kroger when Morris’s 2-year-old son started begging his father for a candy bar, according to police. When Morris said no, the child began crying. Before he knew it, Martinez slapped his son on the top of his hand, grabbed his arm, turned him around and spanked him three times.

“He told my son, ‘This is what we do to kids in Mexico,'” Morris recalled after the incident. “I told him, ‘Well, this isn’t Mexico.'”

Fortunately, the child was not injured in the process and didn’t even cry in reaction to Martinez’s actions.

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“He really just seemed astonished that this guy decided to spank him,” Morris said. “He just looked at me and seemed confused by the whole thing.”

When police arrived to speak with Martinez, they noted he was slurring his speech and smelled of alcohol. As they attempted to handcuff him, he reportedly pulled away and tried to refuse being arrested. Once officers were able to get him inside of a patrol car, he proceeded to kick the doors and windows. He was taken to a nearby hospital, where he was medically cleared, and then booked into the county jail on charges of cruelty to children, obstruction of officers, battery and disorderly conduct. He is currently being held on $3,390 bond and is “no longer welcome at the grocery store.”

Newnan Police Department

“It was hard to fall asleep that night,” Morris said, aggravated by the incident but thankful his son wasn’t hurt. “Something like that takes a little while to process.”

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