A mother has admitted assaulting her daughter by dragging her by the hair as the teenager threw a tantrum over going to school.
The exasperated 51-year-old and her estranged husband tried to drag their unruly 14-year-old by her hands and feet after she refused to go to bed and get her school uniform ready for the following day.
The mum cannot be named to protect the identity of her daughter, who was described as “bright and articulate” but whose behaviour “fell off a cliff edge” when she began experimenting with cannabis and alcohol.
The court was told the girl has only been in school for two hours in the past month.
The July 5 incident was accidentally caught on camera by the girl’s father, who had began filming as proof of his daughter’s behaviour, but it only captured the assault by her mother in the kitchen at their family home in the affluent market town of Knutsford, Cheshire.
In the footage the mother, who works in a dry cleaners, was seeing grabbing the the tearaway teenager by the hair before taking hold of her arms and dragging her along the floor.
As she did so the girl’s father grabbed hold of the teenager’s legs so the pair could physically carry their daughter up the stairs. They even removed the younger’s trainers to avoid to her kicking out at them.
She had earlier flouted a 9pm curfew imposed on her when she visited a friend’s house and fought with her father when he took her back to her mother’s address. The youngster did not want to complain about the incident to the police.
The mother admitted common assault and was conditionally discharged for 12 months. The girl’s father was not in court over the incident.
The court heard the daughter had been living with her mother after her parents split but at times would stay over with her father.
On the day of the assault the girl had run away from home when her mother discovered she had been refusing to attend school.
Prosecutor Gareth Hughes said: “The girl had headed to school around 10.30am that day but then asked to stay at a friends house until 9pm. The defendant allowed this but her daughter did not return home at that time.
“The child lives with her mother but spends time at her fathers address who lives separately. Both the defendant and her father made efforts to locate her. It seems the victim has then made her way to her fathers address but he refuses to allow her to stay there and he drives her back to her mothers house.
“On arrival, she refuses to get out of the car and the father is forced to physically remove her. Both struck each other as they were moving from the car into the address. The daughter then begins arguing with her mother, saying she is going to run away as does not want to live with her mother and wants to live with her father.
“The victim is sat on the floor refusing to move and to go upstairs, which the defendant has asked her to do. Her current partner records mobile phone evidence of the daughter’s behaviour but it captures the defendant instead.”
Mr Hughes added: “The defendant says her daughter was a bright young girl and she had no issues at school but now she says now her behaviour has fallen off a cliff edge which she says started when she began using alcohol and cannabis.
“She says this incident has escalated to this point over the last few months. She accepts she saw red and forcibly grabbed her. She has taken off her shoes with her partner to assist in getting her upstairs.
“She says would not usually react in this manner and and accepts her actions amounted to an assault. She is remorseful for her actions. The hair pulled by the assault caused no physical injury. This is the victims mother and it is a domestic incident. Just to be clear, the victim did not wish to give any formal complaint to the police.”
In mitigation for the woman, defence lawyer Anthony Derbyshire said her client accepted she had dragged her daughter by the hair.
She also accepted she would have caused some pain, and only said she only restrained the girl as a form of self defence.
Mr Derbyshire added that she admitted to what had happened to police and full cooperated with the investigation.
Of the incident, Mr Derbyshire said: “Her daughter had returned from her father’s address. There was an altercation with her father where both of were involved in blows being thrown with getting out of the car.
“She then comes into her mothers house threatening to leave. It is late at night. She has asked her daughter to get her clothing ready for school the next day and to go to bed. Her daughter is sat down by the fridge in the kitchen by the back door and she has just seen red.
“It was a culmination of months and months of stress trying to talk to her about how her behaviour is not appropriate and how their needs to be rules and respect. She bitterly regrets it and knows she has overstepped the mark.
“The daughter did not want to co-operate with the police. That may be because she realises she was the instigator on the night and the catalyst to this incident.
“The daughter has been in school for just two hours over the last month and refuses to go to school today. She is still not going to school and mum is crying out for help. Her daughter stayed with her dad for one month but his health has suffered and is now in receipt in medication.
“Sadly the girl’s behaviour has not improved at all and mum is assessing all types of help. Her daughter now has a social worker and has been referred to CAMS but has not engaged to date. They have an appointment a social worker.
“Her daughter is using drugs and drugs were found at home. Drugs is a grave concern to mum and this is a single incident where she has taken hold of her daughter in complete frustration. She assured me it will never happen again.”
The mother was also ordered to pay £107 in costs.
JP Marcia Moss told her: “This is not a nice situation to be in and you are obviously struggling at home with your daughter. Good luck with your daughter.”