Welcome to Obamaland … Charlton, Mass Library Sends Cops to 5 Year Old Girls Home To Collect Overdue Books


Are you serious? What’s the matter was SWAT and the Massachusetts National Guard busy?

The Charlton Public Library in Charlton, MA had the audacity to send the police to the home of a 5 year old girl to collect over due books.  This might be the most ridiculous use of the police and a waste of tax payer dollars ever. The visit by police scared the 5 year old that she burst into tears and thought she was going to be arrested. Does anyone think that this is a bit excessive?

Watch the video HERE.

Charlton Police Sergeant Dan Dowd stopped by the home of Shannon Benoit to let her know that her daughter had two books several months overdue which needed to be returned or paid for.

I thought it was way overboard,” says Benoit. “I closed my door, I looked at my daughter and she started crying.”

Hailey asked her mom if the police were going to arrest her. Hailey says, “I was scared.”

Imagine if an actual crime was being committed that needed a police presence. Instead, the local fuzz was at the home of a hardened 5 year old criminal who had an over due library book.


Feel free to contact the library HERE and ask them what the hell they were thinking?

Even the police officer, Sgt. Dan Dowd admits he wasn’t real keen on going to a child’s home and shaking down a 5 year old for overdue books. What else should be expect from the People’s Republic of Massachusetts.

“Nobody wanted to, on this end to get involved in it,” says Sgt. Dowd. “But the library contacted us, and the chief delegated, and apparently I was one of the low men on the totem pole.”

Posted January 2, 2012 by
Child Welfare, Crime, WTF | 10 comments

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  • Comments

    10 Responses to “Welcome to Obamaland … Charlton, Mass Library Sends Cops to 5 Year Old Girls Home To Collect Overdue Books”

    1. A Texas Grandfather on January 2nd, 2012 10:03 pm

      The common sense element seems to be missing from the library. Also, the mom seems to be a little ditzy.

      Maybe the head librarian and the mom need to attend a class on how things work and what their real responsibilities consist of.

    2. Amy's Sister on January 3rd, 2012 2:12 pm

      While I agree the library went overboard, I have to wonder how many times this mother was sent notice that the books were overdue? What is it teaching her daughter to blame others when the ultimate responsibility is on them to either return the books or pay for them? Why would the daughter be crying unless the mother made a big deal out of it? I would have simply told the officer I will gladly take care of it then close the door and tell my daughter, “Let’s go to the library today!”.

    3. Sully101 on January 3rd, 2012 8:08 pm

      Why are you fantasizing about what would have happened if a serious crime was taking place when police were collecting the books? We know that didn’t happen; I’m sure the police would have prioritized appropriately. Why can’t this irresponsible mother follow the rules like everyone else? I’ll bet the mother tries to sue someone for this.
      SM: because I actually like it when police actually handle real crimes. Fantasizing, what are you an idiot? Actually, your comment pretty solidifies that question.

      I guess you think that having the police go raid kid’s lemonade stands is a great thing as well.

      There were plenty of ways to handle this issue, sending a cop to one’s house was not it.

    4. kitty on January 3rd, 2012 9:15 pm

      If you read the library’s web home page it clearly states how they have had to resort to using their local PD to get taxpayers material back to them.
      Phone calls are made. Emails sent. Letters. A bill is then sent for overdue books after being kept for over a month… After 6 months, they resort to sending in their PD to retrieve items.

      In one year (13 homes/families) they retrieved $2,634.00 worth of material.

      The library staff are trying to be good stewards of their taxpayers money. It may seem extreme, however, this parent seemed to ignore the phone calls, emails, BILL, and no surprise, the PD showed up. What is their library to do? It takes time for staff to call, email, send bills, envelopes cost money, stamps, keep record of who has what and for how long tracking it… granted, some times there are instances where someone can’t return a book in a timely manner ~ a simple phone call to your library usually you can keep the book for a little longer.

      I personally feel that Mom should have done due diligence and returned the book in a timely fashion, or have called them if she couldn’t get there in time. Most Libraries are pretty good about returning books back after they are due. Apparently this woman ignored the protocol… She should be thankful that the Library in her town does not charge late fees ~ and/or revoke her card use… that may of been even a more costly lesson. I think she got of pretty good considering and yes, it may of been embarrassing, but I have to think like #2. mentioned, Mamma must of freaked out for the daughter to have reacted that way. I would think the officer showed grace and not read her, her Miranda rights.

      What were they to do? Maybe having the Police retrieve them seems a bit over the top, but when you think about it, is the Librarian to go by themselves and try to get the Town’s property back… I think not and if folks ignore not returning them or paying for them… $2,000.00 plus returned in a year.. hey, it was probably cheaper than a collection agency’s bill would of been.
      SM: If they ignore calls and emails, take them to court. No different than any other creditor would do. I just think that the police have more important things to do than act as thumb-breakers to collect $’s. That’s all.

    5. kitty on January 3rd, 2012 9:15 pm

      got lost… is it in the files? oh well.
      SM: Found it in the spam folder.

    6. kitty on January 3rd, 2012 9:16 pm

      (I sent a small novel of an explanation prior to the the above comment, may not make sense…do you have my first reply?)

    7. jejozi on January 4th, 2012 2:32 am

      I see, when these librarians try to be good stewards of taxpayer money they’re loony, but if they just wrote off the books they’d be reckless. Typical. If you’ve seen the tv report, this library system has over $4000 in lost books. What were they supposed to do? These people, in effect, stole the books. After repeated attempts to get them back, they resorted to the cops, just like anyone would if they had their property stolen. This situation lays with the crybaby parents.

    8. jejozi on January 4th, 2012 2:37 am

      Oh, and for those who say that “the cops should be handling real crimes”; theft of taxpayer bought material is a crime, to a the tune of $4000. And this is a small town, most of the cops are Barney Fife.
      SM: wow, such respect for the police, Nice.

      So how much was this fine, $1.28? The book probably cost $15. You can’t even contact a collection agency to retrieve this.

      Personally, my thought on this idea would be that if after 3 documented attempts to make contact with an individual that went without response, including a return receipt letter, the fine should have been added to their property tax bill along with any processing fees and collected that way.Seems to be a common sense approach.

    9. Scared Monkeys on January 4th, 2012 7:52 am

      Sorry, this was way to extreme. There are many of other ways to do this rather than to send the police. The police are not supposed to be collectors. I am sure that the police have more important things to do than scare 5 year olds for books.

      Of course the parent should have been more aware and responsible to return the outstanding books. However, to call the police? Please. What was the fine, $10?

    10. Dolf on January 6th, 2012 9:50 am

      SM, taking them to court would be much more expensive to send over a cop.
      and the courts prob. have more important cases.

      Its the mothers fault.

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