Neighbor testifies child's punishment had racial overtone

Date: 1996-06-12

Neighbor testifies child's punishment had racial overtone

June 12, 1996
Linda Latham Welch   
Austin American-Statesman
 
A neighbor testified Tuesday that Christine Dodson told her she punished her young adopted son more severely than her other children because she didn't want him to become "a lazy black man." Dodson and her husband, Richard, who are white, are being tried in district court on charges of abusing their 6-year-old son, who doctors say was starved nearly to death, and their 5-year-old daughter, whose arms and leg were broken. 

The boy and his sister are African American. The Dodsons force their son to run laps for hours around a tree in the front yard as punishment, regardless of of the weather.

The Dodsons lived in the Creek Bend subdivision in Round Rock. The Dodsons moved to Round Rock in 1993.

Raney said the worn path around the tree was not before they came. They moved to Jonestown after they were released on bond from the Williamson County Jail last fall.

Raney said she became concerned about the Dodson boy after she and Christine quit associating with each other, and "I saw Kevin running longer and longer and longer".

Raney said Christine Dodson explained she was making the child run "because she was afraid he was going to turn into a lazy black man and that he just acted nice around other people but really wasn't.

[This is an excerpt of the original article]

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