Grandmother Arrested After Breaking Up Sleepover

Middletown, CT – Barbara Aiello, 71, has been charged with two counts of risk of injury to a minor after throwing two young boys out of her Connecticut home early Sunday during her grandson’s sleepover. Police allege Barbara endangered both of the 10- and 11-year-old boys when she kicked them out around 4:30 am into the 20-degree winter weather.

Apparently fed up with the rambunctious boys, Barbara ordered them to leave and walk home. Both boys arrived home safe. One of the two children lives in the same condo complex. One of their parents, after hearing the circumstances, filed a complaint with police. Barbara claims she wasn’t sure what time she demanded the boys leave.

“I said … everybody out,” Barbara recalled to NBC Connecticut News. “I opened the door, not thinking, not realizing the time. I was angry and said, ‘Go home.’ ”

When asked by police why she didn’t just drive the boys’ home, Barbara indicated the idea didn’t come to mind at the time.

Barbara has been raising her 14-year-old grandson, Christopher, since his father died last year. She wishes the parents had addressed the issue with her first instead of making a criminal case over the misunderstanding. Now Barbara is scheduled for court Monday, February 11, 2013.

Connecticut general statute 53-21 covers injury or risk of injury to, or impairing morals of, and sale of children. In Connecticut, a person may be charged with risk of injury to a minor for endangering the health and well-being of a minor even if the intent was not to blatantly harm or neglect. While its intention is to protect children from harm, the law is vague and can include a wide variety of scenarios.

Risk of injury to a minor is a Class E felony with potentially serious penalties. A conviction can impose a possible sentence of 10 years in jail. In cases of child sex crimes, it is required the violator register on the sex offender registry. In addition, the Department of Children and Families (DCF) may remove children from your home if they believe the children are in danger.

Do you believe the other parent overreacted to the situation? Do you believe Barbara is in the wrong for sending the children home in the manner she did?

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