A young boy is quickly learning that in the world of potty training, you can’t always pee where you want.
Caroline Robboy tells NBC10 she was inside a clothing store Sunday night on South Street in Philadelphia with her family when her two children told her they had to go to the bathroom.
“While we’re in the store my 9-year-old and 2-year-old needed to use the bathroom,” said Robboy. “They asked if they could use the bathroom and were told no.”
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As Robboy left the store with her elderly in-laws and three children, she says her 2-year-old son Nathaniel ran to a traffic light pole and took matters into his own hands.
“I told him to go over to a grassy patch and make pee,” said Robboy. “Next thing you know I have an officer giving me a police ticket for public urination!”
The officer wrote on the $50 ticket that Robboy told her son to go in the street and never acknowledged it was an accident. Robboy then claims the officer gave her a lecture on parenting.
“He said, ‘I’m doing this for your own protection because God forbid there might have been a pervert out there looking at my son,’” said Robboy.
NBC10 showed the ticket to two women on the street to get their reaction.
“That’s terrible,” said one woman.
“Unbelievable,” said the other. “He’s two! Can we donate or something for her to pay the ticket? Seriously, he’s two!”
Robboy tells NBC10 Nathaniel is a bright child who, aside from Sunday’s misfire, is doing well with his potty training. She also says she plans to fight the ticket.
“It’s not about the $50,” said Robboy. “I want a place that feels friendly to me where my children feel safe and have positive experiences with police officers.”
A spokesperson with the police department tells NBC10 they routinely allow their officers to use their own judgment and discretion. They're currently trying to contact the officer who issued the ticket to get his side of the story before they take any action.