My parents once had a discipline problem with one of my younger brothers. He was nine, and his friend had a BB-gun, so the two of them decided to go down the street to a mechanic's garage and take target practice on the cars parked there. They did $1200 worth of damage. My mother didn't touch him, and explained that my father would take care of it when he got home. My father put a vice-like grip on the boy's ear, and extracted a confession from him ("YOU DID WHAT?!!!"), while the rest of the kids looked on from a safe distance. While he was deciding what kind of punishment to administer, the police rang the door bell, and sat my parents down for a talk to convince them that the crime was serious. My father responded by saying, "You're damn right it's serious!" and demanded that they take the boy to jail for the night. The police said they couldn't do that, he was too young, etc. and slowly backed their way out of the house and said they would allow my father to take care of the problem. My father didn't give him a beating (which surprised us), but he did empty out the boy's bank account to pay for half the damages, made him apologize in person to the owner of the shop, and then let him work off the rest of the damages by mowing the yard (almost two acres) and doing various landscaping jobs around the house. He worked for $0.25 per job, and it took 2-3 years to either pay it off or be let off the hook. There was never any vandalism incidents in our household after that.