Tennis star Anna Kournikova’s mother, Alla Kournikova was put in jail on Tuesday on charges of child neglect. Police were called to Alla’s house after a neighbor saw 5-year old Allen pacing around in front of their Palm Beach house soaking wet and looking distraught. The neighbor called the police who arrived on the scene to find out that Alla had left Allen at home alone for roughly 50 minutes while she ran some errands. Bored, Allen decided to jump out of a second story window, about 15 feet from the ground. Upon landing he smashed his feet in the the sidewalk (no shoes) and decided to alleviate his pain by jumping in the pool. When the police tracked down Alla, Allen was already in recovery mode at the hospital. Alla says that Allen was left home alone on the couch with the television on and he stayed home because he didn’t want to go on the errands.
Now, I don’t know what the statute of limitations is on child neglect, but let me blow your mind for a second: My mom used to leave me home when she ran errands all the time. As early as age four, I believe. Like Alla, my mom was a single mom and it doesn’t always make a ton of sense to call a baby-sitter for a fifty minute trip to the bank, and no one was going to pry me away from my Punky Brewster. Let’s not blame this whole thing on little Allen because he does sound adorably rambunctious, but jumping off the roof and then in to the pool kinda seems like a quintessential little boy behavior, not a sign of neglect.
What angers me about this story is the neighbor. Are things so unfriendly now that the neighbor didn’t say “Hey, Allen, come over here! Where’s your mother? You want to come inside and watch TV? You want a Fig Newton?” Since when are neighbors not friends enough to do this? It’s pretty gross that it’s someone’s prerogative to have the police intervene before they talk to their neighbor’s face, that’s all I’m saying. Especially when there’s something like “child neglect” possibly going to be on someone’s record. Maybe we’ll find out that this Alla Kournikova is a horrible mother and that Allen’s roof-jumping is just the tip of the iceberg, but I’d say she did an OK job with her daughter.