Kansas family on the hook for $132,000 after son topples statue

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Parents may be charged after child damages sculpture

You've heard the old expression, "you break it, you buy it." But little did one family in Kansas know that the rule applied to valuable artwork at the local community center.

Now, the Goodman family may be on the hook for $132,000 after their young son toppled a sculpture.

The incident, which happened during a wedding reception last month, was caught on surveillance video. Sarah Goodman remembers the event at Tomahawk Ridge Community Center starting off with plenty of celebration.

"I think there was a few different parties going on, bridal showers, birthday parties," she said.

But in an instant, that joyous occasion turned into something much different.

"I hear yelling, 'Where is your mother?'" Goodman said.

Surveillance video capturing her 5-year-old son hugging a sculpture on display before it toppled over on top of him. He struggled for a bit when it suddenly fell to the ground.

After rushing to help, Goodman soon learned the sculpture's price tag - a whopping $132,000. And the cost of the damage, according to an insurance company, falls on the family.

"My children are well supervised, but all people get distracted," Goodman said.

The two parents are now questioning the safety of the display.

"It's in the main walkway," she said. "Not a separate room, not plexiglas, not protected, not held down."

The city is calling the incident an unfortunate situation, but officials insist the artwork should not have been touched.

"There's a societal responsibility that you may not interact with it if it's not designed interaction," Overland Park communications director Sean Reilly said.

And the expensive price tag has left the family wondering what could lie ahead.

"See what the insurance company says, and they're going to take it to lawyers," Goodman's husband said. "We don't know."

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