Sonya Hendren: Mom who let her 4-year-old ‘Tomahawk Hendren’ play 120 feet away from her now facing jail

Sonya Hendren: Mom who let her 4-year-old "Tomahawk Hendren" play 120 feet away from her now facing jail

California mom Sonya Hendren who let her 4-year-old son Tomahawk Hendren play alone on a playground just 120 feet away from her front door could wind up in jail.

According to local news outlet CBS8, the neighbor, Sonja Horrell, reported Hendren to Child Protective Services, and Hendren was arrested for felony child neglect and endangerment.

“We have a CPS (Child Protective Service) case now and every time he’s not in my visual site we’re in violation,” Hendren said.

Though the charges have been reduced to misdemeanors Hendron has been fighting to get them dropped for several months.

“I thought she would just get a warning … and she wouldn’t let them be out alone again,” said Sonja Horrell, who reported Tomahawk to CPS. Horrell and her daughter said they were worried because Tomahawk was left unattended. They said they didn’t mean the family any harm.

Horrell’s daughter Brandi said, “I’m not mad that she has to do things now to teach her because what if somebody did take him away.”

Hendron’s attorney said if the prosecution is to proceed with the charges they must prove Hendron willfully placed Tomahawk in danger.

“If this happened 20 years ago, we wouldn’t be here. There wouldn’t be a criminal case filed,” said Hendron’s attorney.

Hendron thinks she’s being criticized for her “free-range” parenting style. She prides herself for being Tomahawk’s mother.

Hendron remarks emotionally, “I breast fed for 28 months. I cloth diapered and, you know, obviously avoided helicopter parenting. I’m doing everything.”

Tomahawk says she’s everything to him. “I lover her like twenty times. Maybe a thousand,” he remarks.

Now, if she’s found gulity, Hendren could face 6 months in jail with 3 years of probation. She was reportedly offered an alternative deal of 30 days in jail and 1 year of probation but turned it down. According to her attorney Alin Cintean, if the prosecution decides to proceed with the charges, they will have to prove that Hendren willfully placed Tomahawk in danger.

Sportact Editors and Wire Services

  • Gary

    Why put his name, “Tomahawk Hendron” in quote marks? That’s what this fool woman really named him.

    • H Collins

      Not my first choice for a name but it beats “Shi thead”, “Moon Unit” and “Dweezil” to name a few.

      • Gary

        All ignorant names, but they don’t diminish the ignorance of naming your child Tomahawk.

  • Mike

    What a waste of taxpayers money. Kids need to be independent and learn by doing themselves. We played outside unsupervised all the time and there were just as many perverts back then.

    • Gary

      A lot of people are using similar logic, and I respect your right to do so, but it just doesn’t wash. If a kid walks down the middle of a street and doesn’t get hit by a car, that doesn’t mean it’s OK to let your kids walk down the middle of the street.

      • Jennefer Flynn Walden

        Allowing your child to play in the only outdoor play area associated with the residence is not the same as putting your child in the middle of the street. If she was living in a single family home she would send the child in the back yard alone like everyone else does, but since she lives in an apartment this is the only place he has. And outside is where kids should be. So every mom who lives in an apartment has to supervise every second, but everyone who lives in a single family home does not have to supervise their four year olds in the back yard? Cause nobody does!

        • Gary

          Children that young should be supervised wherever they are. Also, a lot of people are putting great faith in saying the apartment complex is a “gated community.” Big deal. I have lived in gated communities where people, just about anyone, could come and go as they pleased. The gates only give a false sense of security that some people need, but that doesn’t make the security real.

      • Mike

        While I agree with supervising young children, it does not mean you have hover over them at all times, as this Mom was only 120 ft away. Kids are going to sneak off, should their parents be arrested for that? According to your thinking, parents should be tethered to their kids.

        • Gary

          “According to my thinking?” Thanks, Amazing Kreskin. The issue is not 120 feet. It’s that the child was out of her sight and out of her control and supervision. It wouldn’t matter if it was 6 feet if there was a solid wall between them, which there was. I also never said she should be arrested, but she should take a more active role in caring for her child. “Free range parenting.” Sheesh!

          • Mike

            We are raising stupid, weak, dependent children, that can’t do anything for themselves. I fear for the future of this country in competing with other world powers.

          • Gary

            It’s our job to look after and protect small children. What if poor little Tomahawk was abducted, raped and killed? What if he was attacked by a vicious dog while he was allowed to go “free range?” What if he did wander into traffic and got killed or seriously hurt? Would he be stupid, weak and dependent then? Four year olds are not competing with other world powers, in case you think otherwise.

          • Mike

            No it’s not your job to look after other’s children! If something happened to the child, that’s called life, shit happens, survival of the fittest. Teach your kids to think for themselves and survive this world, just like the animals we are.

          • Gary

            Then let your kids run wild. Like you say, shit happens. I doubt you would be so flip about it if shit really did happen. I’ll remind you, we’re talking about a 4-year-old here. Mother lions look after their cubs.

          • Mike

            My kids do run wild, one is 2.5 years old and the other is 7 years old. They stay home all day by themselves, and play outside in my backyard, no one has ever messed with them, sometimes the squirrels tease them, but every once in a while they catch one and tear it to shreds, and they have some squirrel sushi.

          • Gary

            Squirrels do like nuts. Congratulations.

  • TenQ4Nut10

    People are becoming ridiculously draconian in their efforts to “police” the way people raise their children, all while doing a piss poor job of raising their own by making both their kids and themselves neurotic with this so-called “helicopter” style of parenting. If the Horrells had really been well meaning individuals, they would have introduced themselves to Hendren and let her know that they were outside and keeping an eye on her son since they were already outside doing just that (just with wrong-headed motivations). There really is something to be said about the adage that it takes a “village” to raise children. If neighbors would take the same time and effort to get to know someone that lives next to/near them rather than “spying” on them to cause them a lot of unnecessary grief, children would be protected while still developing their independence and neighbors would develop friendships and, by extension, caring communities. It’s foolish and impractical for people to demand that parents stop everything else to sit and watch their child at play or demand that their child stays indoors while they try to cook, clean, go to the bathroom, do laundry, put away groceries, etc. It’s unreasonable.

    • Gary

      Yeah, it would be a real shame for a parent to have to actually do some parenting. It might inconvenience them.

  • f1fan6

    California the land of fruits and nuts enough said!

  • Carl Winslow

    Looks like the neighbor is the one who learned a valuable lesson: Don’t mess with CPS. You’ll always get more ‘protection’ than you bargain for. You can really mess up someone’s life by making that not-your-business-anyway call. And then you get people like the daughter, totally disconnected except to applaud what a lesson the mom is being taught. Well, the mom is living a nightmare, thanks to Child Interference Services. Another government bureau doing it’s finest work!

  • Judy

    The neighbor stated “I thought she would just get a warning … and she wouldn’t let them be out alone again,” Were there other siblings also? Four years is a little young to be out playing alone but I often remember being supervised by my older siblings.

  • MoeDaRat

    I hope the neighbors get shingles on their faces.

  • Kellie Kent

    The real crime here is that she named this poor child Tomahawk.

  • hugh jorgan

    Oh, you people. What if, what if, what if, what if. Were any of you there? Do any of you actually know what happened? Pull your damned heads in and mind your own business.