GRAND PRAIRIE, Tex. – A Texas father who was arrested for theft after disciplining his daughter by taking her phone away went to court this week to defend his actions.
In 2013, Ronald Jackson says he took his 12-year-old daughter’s phone away after he discovered a text message that he found inappropriate, CBS DFW reports.
“I was being a parent. You know, a child does something wrong, you teach them what’s right,” Jackson told CBS DFW. “You tell them what they did wrong and you give them a punishment to show that they shouldn’t be doing that.”
When Jackson’s ex-girlfriend, Michelle Steppe, found out he took their daughter’s cellphone, she called the cops.
Police officers showed up at Jackson’s door to retrieve the phone, but the father refused to hand it over.
“I didn’t want the police department telling me how to parent my child. It made no sense to me for them to show up and make a big deal out of something that was a small thing,” said Jackson. “I couldn’t believe they would go to this extent for a cell phone. It didn’t seem right.”
He was arrested and charged with misdemeanor theft.
This week, Jackson was in court to defend to actions.
A judge found Jackson not guilty due to lack of evidence, CBS DFW reports.
He also gets to keep the confiscated phone.
Steppe told WFAA that she is unhappy with the verdict because she purchased the phone and pays the phone bill.
“Even if you purchase something with your own money and have a receipt, it’s not yours,” Steppe says. “Someone can take it from you.”
Jackson believes he now has no chance of having a relationship with his daughter, WFAA reports.
“I have to separate myself from them,” Jackson says. “I can’t ever have a relationship with them again.”