(Photo: AP Photo/Fayette County Sheriff's Office, File)
The Georgia State Conference and the Fayette County Branch of the NAACP are launching a probe into the arrest of Atlanta megachurch Pastor Creflo Dollar, who was charged with simple battery last week following an altercation with his 15-year-old daughter.
“Today, many parents in any household have vivid recollections of being firmly disciplined during childhood and can directly reflect on how that discipline made them better adults. In order to ensure fairness, the NAACP wants to make sure that first responders to alleged domestic parent-child dispute calls are skillfully trained to clearly distinguish discipline from child abuse,” said a statement from the NAACP Georgia State Conference.
The State Conference is seeking information about how Dollar was handled by law enforcement during the arrest to ensure community members aren’t unfairly arrested for disciplining their children.
Dollar, 50, one of Atlanta’s most prominent African-American preachers, was arrested after his teenage daughter called 911 to report she was chocked, punched and hit with her father's shoe when the two argued about a party she wanted to attend. The arresting officer noted a scratch on the girl’s neck; however, Dollar defended himself, calling the scratch a symptom of his daughter’s eczema.
“We simply want to make sure that Pastor Dollar is allowed to be a responsible parent and discipline his children,” Fayette County NAACP President John E. Jones said in a statement. “Parenting children in this day and time can be very challenging because many children believe that they can call the police at any time to stop any unwanted discipline. Little do they know that this can subject their parent or them to an arrest. Conversely, unruly or undisciplined children could get physically hurt or suffer worse punishment when they act out and come in contact with law enforcement. African-American children suffer the most in this situation.”
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