Kids Donate Money, Mother Ends Up in Jail

Posted by: Wed, Mar 12, 2008
Posted in category Current Events, Government

Imagine this scenario, you pull up in front of the post office to drop a letter in that big blue box outside. The temperature outside is freezing and your two year old is fast asleep in her car seat. If you were just stepping a way for a minute, the car locked and still in your site would you leave your child sleeping in the car?
Illinois mom
If you lived in Chicago you would be arrested for Child Endangerment. That is what happened to a mother named Treffly Coyne, only her scenario is slightly different. Treffly a wife and mother of three girls stopped by Wal-Mart to donate coins the two older girls had collected from their dad’s office for The Salvation Army Kettle. When they arrived at the store it was sleeting, Treffly parked her car in the loading zone behind someone loading a Christmas Tree. She proceeded to turn on the emergency flashers, lock the car, turn on the alarm and walk less than 10 yards away to the Kettle with the older girls. They took a couple quick pictures and when Mrs. Coyne turned around there was a community service officer next to her car.

Mrs. Coyne states that this “officer” was on a tirade. She tried to explain that she never entered the store, but the police were called. Treffly called her husband who advised her not to say anything else. Which I would agree was probably best for this family, they needed a lawyer. By the time her husband arrived she was in handcuffs in the back of the patrol car.

Treffly Coyne is now charged with Child Endangerment and Obstructing a Peace Officer, even though the child welfare service found no credible evidence of neglect or abuse. If convicted she faces up to 1 year in jail and a $2,500 fine.

This is so Ridiculous!

These kids were donating money for a good cause and they end up seeing their mother taken away in handcuffs sitting in the back of a police car. This is a gross negligence of the misuse of authority.

I could understand if this woman left her child in the car and went INTO the store or left the car running and out of sight.

Michelle Forbes, Treffly’s attorney sums it up with this Boiled Over

“As long as the car is not out of her sight, then the child is not unattended,”

The State of Illinois should step up and save their taxpayers some money by putting a stop to the prosecution of a good mother. They are putting undo stress on a decent American Family!

Read The Full Article on

Best wishes for the Coyne Family, from 

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5 Responses to “Kids Donate Money, Mother Ends Up in Jail”

  1. DruU says:

    Mar. 12, 2008

    This is absolutly crazy… I have seen a woman get arrested in Las Vegas for leaving a child in her car while she went into the Store. Now we are talking 90+ degree’s in the shade and the car turned off and locked. She went into the store. I can see her getting arrested. But this is just pure Bull $H!T

  2. An American says:

    Apr. 4, 2008

    Treffly Coyne is a fine mother who happened to be out on an excursion planned by her children to donate to charity. A lesson we would all do better to be taught by her kids. Unfortunately the government, very concerned about the welfare of her child stepped in. Somehow the officer saw that a sleeping two year old in a warm and safe locked car with the alarm activated would be better off without the mother who cares for her.

    The police would not listen to her story, they refused to listen to witnesses, they did not investigate by going into the store to look at the security video.

    Instead, they arrested Treffly Coyne, took custody of her two year old child, broke up her family, and most disturbing, the police abandoned three little girls at the Walmart… left them to their own luck, crying on the curb.

    All because the government decided Treffly Coynes family needed its “protection.”

    Her children were never in any danger until the representatives of the government showed up.

    The police chief of Crestwood, Timothy Sulikowski, knew that there was no evidence that Ms. Coyne had done anything wrong, yet he still decided she needed to be charged and prosecuted.


    For 97 days she was labled a child abuser by the state, investigated by the DCFS or CPS, paid expensive legal bills and suffered the public humiliation brought on by the unsubstantiated charges of the Crestwood Police.

    Even when the prosecutor dropped the charges for lack of evidence, the police chief and Mayor Robert Stranczek continued to make public statements against Treffly Coyne.

    Treffly Coyne is now suing the Village of Crestwood, police officers James Ciukaj, Forrest Wondolowski and Angel Brudnicki in federal court.

    She would have preferred to have won in criminal court.

    All she asked for was an apology and that the charges would be dropped. Thousands of dollars later, and hundreds of thousands of posts on the internet, the Crestwood Police cannot even give her that.

    A terrible mistake was made that night at the Walmart and the Crestwood Police and Mayor Stranczek refuse to acknowlege it. Until they do, all citizens, all families in Crestwood are in danger of these kinds of police abuse.

    Her fight is not over. The federal Judge will hear the case and has the power to direct the Crestwood Police to make changes in their policies and procedures.

    Hopefully she will prevail in her fight, which is a fight for all of our civil rights and her case will create stronger boundaries between the family and the police.

    It was wrong to arrest that mother and subject her children to witness in terror the actions of the police.

    What is more wrong is that the woman has to fight such wrongdoing in federal court.

    A victory for Treffly Coyne will be a victory for all American Families. The civil rights she is fighting for our your civil rights as well.

  3. Chad & Stacey says:

    Apr. 4, 2008

    Thank you American for posting more details about Treffly’s situation and giving us an update. When we heard about this story we were completely outraged. We agree that Treffly is fighting for all of us parents out there, we wish her our best. Please provide us with an update if one comes along.

  4. An American says:

    Jun. 29, 2008

    The lawsuit in the second district Federal Court of Northern Illinois is still on… meanwhile last week Crestwoods Police Chief resigned without explanation. Two of the cops that arrested Ms. Coyne were confirmed to be engaged in an adulterous affair with each other and the third is being investigated for disability fraud. Slowly the march towards justice moves on.

  5. Chad & Stacey says:

    Jun. 30, 2008

    An American,

    Thank you so much for the update. I am glad that things are still moving forward in Treffly Coyne’s favor. Keep it up! This means so much to so many parents in our country. Justice must be served. We wish the best for the Coyne family and we hope that the children are able to put this behind them. Keep the updates coming.

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