What do you do if you’re a concerned parent and your children seem to be spending way too much time in front of the television instead of getting outside and enjoying a real childhood like you used to when you were their age? Consider your parenting methods and encourage them to see the benefits of a more active lifestyle? Impose bans or restrictions on them when it comes to the television and computer usage? Enrol them in some sort of sporting organisation and hope that they take to it and want to go back? Hang on, here’s another thing you could do; shoot the television with a .22 rifle….
This is exactly what an Illinois mother, forty year old Jennifer Ullery did recently. It is hard to say if it had the desired effect but if I was one of her children, I am pretty sure watching my mother fire a Ruger .22 long rifle in to the family 50-inch flatscreen would be enough to at least keep me out until dark. ABC Chicago reported that the woman was subsequently charged with reckless discharge of a firearm, unlawful possession of a firearm without a license and three counts of endangering the health and safety of a child.
The whole thing was said to have gone down on the 20th of January, with Ullery pleading not guilty in court last Monday. According to the Northwest Herald, Deputy Police Chief Andrew Doles, said that the woman’s three children aged 11, 13 and 15, were all watching a music video by rock band Primus, when she entered the room and began to discharge in to the defenceless television. “Mom didn’t say anything, she just walked into the room and started shooting the TV,” Doles said.
Fortunately for all concerned, nobody was injured during the incident. Various reports said that the local police were prompted to visit the house on the 9th of February at the suggestion of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services. Strangely, upon entering the house and surveying the scene, the police found that no attempt had been made to clean up the mess as a result of the shooting, with shards of broken flatscreen still littering the floor. The cops also found rifle, magazine and ammo. The amount of shots fired at the television does not appear to have been reported by local media outlets.
NBC Chicago reported that all three children have since been placed under the care of another relative as a result of the incident.