A Dr. Phil Prime Time Special: Caged?: Randall

Dr. Phil begins by reminding Randall that people are outraged by what he is accused of doing.

"Are you some control-freak monster who is dominating and isolating this defenseless child?" asks Dr. Phil.

"No," says Randall.

Dr. Phil asks, "Did you tape the light switch shut so he couldn't turn the lights on?"

"Yes," Randall confirms, "and the reason is because I had another fixture in there that he was burning things on the bulb, and it was to keep him from burning things on the light bulb."

Dr. Phil asks about the window that was taped shut, and Randall says, "He had opened the window and decided he wanted to prowl out on the roof, and I had to run in there and catch him."

"Does your son have to ask permission to go to the bathroom?" asks Dr. Phil.


"Absolutely not."

"Why does he have a pee bottle in his bedroom?"

Randall says, "I'm not supposed to talk about the specifics of the case, and that's one of the specifics that I can't talk about."

"But you don't deny that he does have a urine bottle in his bedroom," Dr. Phil presses.

"I'm going to go ahead and answer that," Randall tells him. "He had a problem peeing in the room. He'd play target practice with peeing. He'd pee on the wall, he'd pee on the bed, he'd pee in the corner. That was just something that he did."

Dr. Phil asks Randall to confirm that his son's door had a lock on the outside. Randall looks in the direction of his lawyer before confirming the existence of the lock.

"I saw you look at your attorney," says Dr. Phil, but, I mean, that's a factual matter. It's either on the door, or it's not."


"It is," says Randall.

"Why do you have a bolt on the outside of your son's door?" asks Dr. Phil.


"Because my son was getting out in the mornings, and the reason why that's dangerous for him is because we live on a creek. This is Florida, and there are gators in the water, and I chase water moccasins out from my front door at least two or three times a week."

Dr. Phil asks whether a gator or poisonous snake has attacked there in the last 50 years.

"No," says Randall, "but I can walk out the door, and they're outside my door all the time, and I've had to chase them out the yard."

"OK," Dr. Phil continues, "but the producers asked you the reasons why you would lock the door and you said and I quote, 'his behavior got too much for me to handle.'"

Randall says, "Not that it was too much to handle but..."

"That's what you said," Dr. Phil asserts. "I mean did I read that right?

"Yes, you read it," says Randall.

"I'm trying to understand, did you lock him in there to keep him safe from the gators and snakes, or did you lock him in there because his behavior got too much for you to control?"


"No, it wasn't that he was too much for me to handle," says Randall. "I was able to handle him. It's just that when he's not being watched, that is when he does things that can harm him and hurt him."

"You say he's ADD or ADHD. Who diagnosed that?" asks Dr. Phil.

"I knew he had it because I have it myself, and I can tell that he had it," says Randall.

"But that's a very specific neurological disorder," says Dr. Phil. "Have you had him seen by a competent physician to make that determination?"


"No," says Randall. "I didn't, because our funds were low. I didn't really know that there were free services out there."

"Well, if what you're saying is true," Dr. Phil probes, "if he is ADD/ADHD, if he's acting out by trying to get things to catch on fire with light bulbs and peeing on the walls, how does locking him in the room two hours a day fix it?"

Randall says, "Because that's the time he couldn't be watched, because that was only during the time that we were sleeping."

"Is it possible that you've just used some really poor judgment here?" asks Dr. Phil.

With a glance to his attorney, Randall says, "OK, she's advised me I should stop."

"Really?" asks Dr. Phil. "Are you going to stop it?"

"It's probably good advice, I don't know," says Randall.

"It's up to you," says Dr. Phil. "I can't compel you to go forward."

Randall asks Dr. Phil to repeat his last question, and Dr. Phil asks again if perhaps he has used some really poor judgment.

"I can't say that I have, no," says Randall.

"I have to tell you, some of it doesn't hang together for me," says Dr. Phil. "Are you telling me that you would expect anybody that walked in the house and saw a slide-lock locking a child in a room and a pee bottle in there, are you telling me you would expect them to think that's OK? You're saying, you don't want to be a lazy parent, 'So I just lock him in the room if he gets too much.' Are you kidding me? Has it occurred to you that it might be worth going to the pediatrician and ask questions? 'Is there something I can do besides locking my child in the room?'"

"Well. It wasn't that," says Randall. "I really do think I want to stop, because I'm thinking you're trying make me look bad now, and that's what I'm trying not to do. Seems like... I don't know where you are trying to direct me."

"Well, I've been very straight with you from the beginning," says Dr. Phil. "I said I'm going to let you tell your story, and then I've got some hard questions I'm going to ask you."