Wife Swap participant punches his daughter in the face; production stopped.

Wife Swap participant punches his daughter in the face; production stopped.
A 38-year-old father, who was participating in the ABC series Wife Swap, punched his 13-year-old daughter in the face during production, although not while cameras were rolling. After traveling to a location, the crew “arrived shortly after the alleged attack and noticed the girl had obvious injuries to her nose and cheek.” The girl “told the crew members that her father had struck her several times in the face with his fist for not wearing a coat,” and then “The Wife Swap crew took the child to a nearby doctor’s office for treatment and then to Saint Thomas Hospital for X-rays. The father did not accompany them,” according to The Tennessean. Yanni Panagiotakis was arrested and “charged with domestic assault late Tuesday and freed yesterday morning on $1,000 bail,” police told the paper. In a statement announcing that production was stopping permanently on the episode, ABC said,

First and foremost, the well-being of all of the participants in Wife Swap is a top priority. At the first realization that the daughter of the Nashville-based family participating in the episode that has been shooting over the past week needed medical attention, the producers immediately sought treatment for her.

discussion by

about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 37, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.