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Spanking is ‘reasonable force,’ NY court rules

CENTRAL ISLIP, N.Y. — A New York court has ruled that a Long Island father used reasonable force when he spanked his 8-year-old son for cursing at an adult.

Newsday says the state Appellate Division dismissed a child neglect proceeding against the man last week.

The father spanked his son in October 2012 during a party at a friend’s house. Suffolk County social services officials alleged he used an open hand and then used a belt on the boy’s buttocks, legs and arms after they got home. A county family court found him in neglect.

But the appellate division said under the circumstances the spanking “did not constitute excessive corporal punishment.” It said there was insufficient evidence to prove he hit his son with a belt.

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