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Other States are Starting to Realize the Full Impact of Domestic Violence, Indiana Needs to Also

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This is from another friend and fellow advocate Dara Carlin from Hawaii. Sorry for the short notice, but this is happening today. It will be televised at 5:35 pm Eastern Daylight Time today, and you can watch it on the internet at the link below. Many Indiana state legislators fail to realize the full impact of domestic violence in this state, including courts giving child custody to abusers. We need to have an event like this also in Indiana.

 

 

Media AdvisoryHawaii House of Representatives

June 20, 2011 – For Immediate Release

Contact: Office of Rep. John Mizuno, Telephone: 808-586-6050, Cell: 808-741-0639

 

LAWMAKERS TO HOLD BRIEFING ON DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND HEAR CONCERNS FROM DOMESTIC VIOLENCE SURVIVORS AND DISCUSS THE NEED FOR POLICY CHANGE

 

Several domestic violence survivors will share their story of how they lost custody of their child(ren) to the abuser, even after a finding of domestic violence by the abuser

 

WHAT:            The House Human Services Chairman, Rep. John Mizuno, will hold a legislative briefing to address domestic violence in Hawaii.  Rep. Mizuno will identify certain concerns involving specific failures of the current “system” in adequately addressing domestic violence.  Rep. Mizuno will also be hearing from domestic violence victims, survivor advocates, and agencies working directly with domestic violence victims, issuing protective orders and temporary restraining orders.

The briefing will:

• Identify and address concerns regarding domestic violence in Hawaii

• Explain the reason for the various bills which seek to provide greater protection for domestic violence victims

• Explain the difficulties in passing measures which seek to improve the state’s system in handling domestic violence cases

WHEN:            Tuesday, June 21, 2011 – 11:35 a.m. Hawaii Standard Time (Televised in Hawaii on Ch. 53, for Neighbor Island residents and nationwide go to the internet www.olelo.org – click NATV Ch. 53 for online live stream coverage)

WHERE:           Hawaii State Capitol, Room 329

WHY:               Rep. Mizuno was contacted by several survivors of domestic violence who will be sharing their stories with lawmakers during the briefing. According to Rep. Mizuno, “It is extremely concerning to hear that time after time the abusers who beat our victims, many times end up gaining custody of the children.  Based on our victims’ testimonies and information provided by organizations and advocates for domestic violence victims, I believe our current system has many major flaws in properly addressing domestic violence issues.  Therefore, I am looking for solid solutions to better address domestic violence statewide at the conclusion of this briefing.”

Barry Goldstein: Why Don’t We End Domestic Violence?

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This post comes from my friend and fellow advocate Barry Goldstein, and was originally post on the Time’s Up blog.  This addresses the real concern of domestic violence and it’s lack of attention and even condoning of it when it is brought up during child custody proceedings.

Why Don’t We End Domestic Violence?

By Barry Goldstein

Society has the knowledge and ability to prevent a large majority of domestic violence crimes and especially murders. It is not like cancer or heart disease which would require some fundamental changes in human behavior to achieve massive reductions. We could easily put together a change in laws, policies and practices and quickly end the danger of domestic violence for most women and children. If we could as readily prevent most of the deaths from earthquakes, tornados, cancer or terror attacks, we would not hesitate to do so. Why should we continue to tolerate the enormous harm caused by abusers? Many of our leaders have spoken of and dreamed of a world without domestic violence. This is a worthy goal, but I am not naïve enough to believe we can end all domestic violence in our lifetimes. We can, however create a massive reduction in domestic violence crimes. I say let’s do it.

Background

Our publisher asked Mo Hannah and I to prepare a second volume of DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, ABUSE and CHILD CUSTODY. I decided to write a chapter for the book of a modern tale of two cities comparing Quincy, Massachusetts with Poughkeepsie, New York. I selected Quincy, Massachusetts because they had developed the Quincy Model which had resulted in a drastic reduction of domestic violence homicide. I selected Poughkeepsie, New York because they had been severely criticized for using approaches in custody court that strongly favored abusive fathers. The court system and particularly the judges reacted to the criticism in a defensive and retaliatory manner. Dutchess County has now had a series of domestic violence homicides including the last crime in which the abusive father also killed a police officer. The County Legislature created a committee to study and respond to the series of domestic violence homicides and I am interested to see if they make a connection between the murders and the pattern of mistreatment of protective mothers in the custody court system.
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Sex Offenders Reveal Sick Secrets: Will it Matter to Family Court Judges in Indiana?

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Whenever a child or a mother reports child sexual abuse in Indiana, if there is a child custody case involved, it will be systematically ignored.  By everyone.  Not too long ago in a case in Marion County, someone from Carl Brizzi’s Prosecutors Office said they believed the evidence of sexual abuse against a young girl by her father, but said they wouldn’t do anything about it since it was in family court.

An employee for the Marion County Prosecutor’s office, who has to remain anonymous, believes Kay’s story is legitimate, but could not take action due to the custody dispute.

WTF?

From WRTV-6:

MUNCIE, Ind. — A handful of convicted sex offenders spoke frankly to 100 strangers Wednesday night in Muncie, with no questions off limits. The workshop was a first-of-its-kind event put on by the Family Services Society to prevent future abuse, 6News’ Tanya Spencer reported.

As offenders spoke candidly about the crimes that put them in jail, two of the panelists said they assaulted young girls they had just met. One abused his own daughter and another was a church mentor.

The offenders talked about how they justified their actions in their minds.  “I moan and gripe and complain about the children that are wearing pants that’s got “sexy” (written) on the back. Why do you want to put a word on your 12-, 14- or 16-year-old daughter’s butt? I mean, is that not trying to draw attention to her?” said one sex offender, who met his teenage victim online. He blamed pornography for fueling his addiction to sex.

All of the panelists agreed that they thought only of their own gratification during their crimes, never about the effect on their victims.  Parents came to the workshop looking for answers.  “(I want) to see how these folks operate and get insight to see where I can stand to protect my own children,” said Dwight Martin, a father of a 5-year-old.”  (I wanted) to make sure that I know what to look for to keep my kids safe,” said Brandy Martin, Dwight’s wife.”

I have three little children. I have a 4-year-old, a 1-year-old and a 3-month-old. That’s my worst fear ever is that something awful like that could happen to them,” said parent Sandrina Saintignon.

Counselors with the Family Services Society said unfortunately there’s no known set of characteristics or personality traits that will help parents identify an offender. They also said that 90 percent of sexual abuse is committed by someone the victim knows and trusts.

The best advice from those who know best how to lure young victims is to talk to and listen to kids.  Let them know they’re loved unconditionally and that they can share anything with you.  Also, pay close attention to any change in their behavior.

“It (the sexual abuse) changed how she (his 13-year-old daughter) acted towards me,” said one offender, “So, if you see a change toward a family member or friend, pay attention to it. Ask questions.

“Experts said one in three girls and one in six boys will be molested in their lifetime.Experts also said 88 percent of sexual abuse cases are never reported.  The Family Services Society has done panels like Wednesday’s before for small groups, but this was the first that was open to the public.  Event organizers said they may offer more sessions in the future.

Join the Mothers of Lost Children in Silent Vigil at the White House on Mothers Day

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UPDATE: New hours for the Vigil to be held on Mothers Day, May 8th, 2011.  There will be a speakout scheduled to start at 6:00 pm in front of the White House.  This will be followed by circling the White House, going down 17th St. over to Constitution Ave. then up 15th St. until we return to the front of the White House.  This will be what we did last year, but just continues the journey completely around the White House complex.  A candlelight vigil will then begin, being held until 9:30 pm.  Bring your signs, banners, and candles (battery operated if possible).  We will have a few to hand out, and will have some “Mothers of Lost Children” t-shirts also.  If you have any questions, please email “mothersoflostchildren@gmail.com”.   Contact phone number is (317) 455-5827.  This change will hopefully allow this vigil to happen without any problems.  So in summary:

6:00 – 7:00 pm  Speakout for the mothers/guests

7:00 – 7:45 pm   March by the Mothers of Lost Children around the White House (down 17th St., over on Constitution Ave., and up 15th St. to return to front of White House)

7:45 – 9:30 pm   Candlelight vigil for the children lost to abusers

A protest is still being worked out for the front of the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services for Monday, May 9th.  Stay tuned for more information coming on that.  Thank you and we hope to see you there!

Protest held on February 14th, 2011, at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, before they threatened to have us arrested.

We are going to be at the White House again on Mothers Day, to protest the use of taxpayer funds to support fatherhood initiative programs, which have been effective in helping abusive fathers in taking custody of children away from their victims.   Extra accommodations have been secured at the hostel we usually stay at for these events, which have been going on about three times a year, so if you can’t find a place to stay, email mothersoflostchildren@gmail.com about this.  This is a clean, safe place to stay and costs only $38.00 a night (breakfast included!).

Some of the organizations taking part and supporting the Silent Vigil include Mothers of Lost Children Chapters in California, Indiana and Delaware, the California Protective Parents Association, the Center for Judicial Excellence, the National Organization for Women, and the Battered Mothers Custody Conference. Many other organizations are also included.  If you cannot attend the event in Washington, D.C. on Mothers Day, something will be planned in Indiana that you can attend.  Other states will be holding similar events, and Ms. Hodge will be coordinating a lot of these as she has publicity contacts nationwide.

So stay tuned for more information…hope you can attend this year’s event!  Last year was very successful in many ways.  There were hundreds of mothers in vigil.  It needs to continue until the practice of giving abusers custody of children stops.

Mothers of Lost Children Silent Vigil from Mothers Day, 2010

Please Join Us For Another Rally in Washington D.C., February 13th and 14th

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Less than two weeks to go!  Remember, there is a meeting the evening of the 13th at the hostel where many are staying.  For information on the hostel…click here.

Mothers of Lost Children Blog Statistics for 2010

This is a new feature from WordPress, that tells how the website did over the past year.

The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Wow.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 12,000 times in 2010. That’s about 29 full 747s.

 

In 2010, there were 20 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 114 posts. There were 6 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 919kb.

The busiest day of the year was July 30th with 662 views. The most popular post that day was Local “Stepfamily” Counselor Celebrates Baby’s Death.

 

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were alphainventions.com, en.wordpress.com, courierpress.com, mail.live.com, and search.aol.com.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for bond between mother and child, the bond between mother and child, torm howse, joseph warnock, and skinhead fights.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

1

Local “Stepfamily” Counselor Celebrates Baby’s Death July 2009
23 comments

2

Domestic Violence Shelters In Indiana October 2008
1 comment

3

The Bond Between Mother and Child March 2009
3 comments

4

ATTENTION INDIANA: CPS Lets Two More Children Die, When Will Someone Do Something About Them? April 2010
8 comments

5

When Battered Women Lose Custody May 2009
11 comments

Written by mothersoflostchildren

January 17, 2011 at 7:05 am

Make Plans to Attend the Battered Mothers Custody Conference VIII in New York This January

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In it’s eighth year, this next conference will focus on getting battered mothers connected with organizations. It is a powerful event and provides an excellent opportunity to network with other abused mothers dealing with child custody issues and advocates. Here is a video from one of the conferences several years ago, produced by Garland Waller of Boston University:

 


Battered Women, Abused Children, and Child Custody:

“A National Crisis”

The Eighth Annual Battered Mothers Custody Conference

BMCC VIII: “The Unity Conference”

January 7th, 8th, & 9th, 2011

(Friday evening, 6 p.m. – Sunday afternoon)

Holiday Inn Turf

205 Wolf Road, Albany, NY

(Five minutes away from Albany International Airport)

Reserve early to get the $99 conference rate!

Call: 1-800-HOLIDAY or 518-458-7250

Ask for the Battered Mothers Custody Conference block.

A major focus this year will be to connect battered mothers with organizations working locally, nationally, and internationally to combat unjust family court practices that continue to do untold harm to battered mothers and their children.

For updated details and registration, please visit www.batteredmotherscustodyconference.org.

For Domestic Violence Awareness Month, Wouldn’t it be Wonderful if Indiana TV Stations Ran PSAs that Mean Something

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Here are new Public Service Announcements (PSAs) that were produced for the Center for Judicial Excellence.  Does any station in Indiana have the guts to run these?  It is time the public knew the truth.

MOTHERS ALERT: Indianapolis Father’s Rights Lawyers Work to Discredit You

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Watch out for these folks in Indianapolis: Schembs Sweeney. If they are on your ex’s side, they may be up to some shenanigans, or may have a “special relationship” with your judge. Here is a screen shot of their website:

Abusers typically scream about “false allegations.”   However, from the American Bar Association’s 10 Myths About Custody and Domestic Violence and How to Counter Them, it is noted:


The courts of Marion County typically disregard claims of domestic violence, and even when accepted, don’t care and hand the children to the abuser anyway (this ALSO being noted on the ABA report).  Download the ABA document and MAKE YOUR LAWYER READ IT.  Most lawyers in Indianapolis won’t care, but this is the lives of your children on the line. Do everything you can to document your case, including hospital reports, tape recordings, pictures, witnesses, anything you can.  If it wasn’t for Mel Gibson’s girlfriend Oksana having a tape recorder running, she wouldn’t have caught the vicious rant which included “I want my child, and no one will believe you” as Gibson raged about the attacks he made on her.

Take care of yourself and your children.  The lawyers and judges in Indianapolis won’t.

Crisis in Family Courts: Abusers Getting Custody

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I had several dear friends on this recent show on Dr. Phil. Both mothers I know had their children killed by their fathers in horrible murder-suicides when the court ORDERED them to give the children to the father (even after death threats).

Times Up! No More Dead Children!

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Enough is enough! The general public still thinks that mothers don’t lose custody unless they’re nuts or sluts. But this article tells you the truth: the protective mother lost custody because she COULD NOT AFFORD AN ATTORNEY. She was outgunned by a lawyered-up Daddy who could buy what he wanted. Which was basically a 5-year-old girl he could rape, torture, and systematically starve. Everybody happy now?

New details emerge in death of Muncie 5-year-old

During a six-month period last fall and winter, more than a half dozen health care workers treated or observed serious problems with five year-old Lauren McConniel. It wasn’t until about a week before she died on March 9th from severe malnutrition, that her injuries were reported to child protective services.

Gene Cox Fox59

9:06 PM EDT, June 16, 2010

Muncie, Ind. –

During a six month period last fall and winter, more than a half dozen health care workers treated or observed problems with tiny Lauren McConniel.

It wasn’t until about a week before the five year-old Muncie girl died on March 9, 2010 of severe malnutrition that her injuries were reported to child protective services.

Court records show Lauren’s health detiorated once in the care of her father Ryan McConniel and step-mother Britany McConniel.

The Muncie Police Department’s lead detective in the case thinks health care workers would innocently believe what the parents were telling them about the, when added together, unusual injuries.

“I think the health care providers had been duped in some of this,” said Sgt. Jimmy Gibson.

Sgt. Gibson’s investigation uncovered that the first sign of alleged abuse came in November of last year.  It was a strange injury (severe eye trauma) followed weeks later with severe weight loss, bizarre behavior, head, bone, and vaginal injuries.

Ryan and Britany McConniel were arrested this month on felony child neglect charges.  Both remain behind bars in the Delaware County Jail.  Britany McConniel has no bond.

Nothing was reported to Indiana Child Protective Services until March 1, 2010.  Shortly after that Lauren was transferred in grave condition to an Indianapolis hospital.

Muncie police say they have no intention of launching a failure to report investigation targeting health care workers including doctors and nurses who treated Lauren in the months before her death.

Amber Huggins the little girl’s birth mother lost custody of Lauren late last year, FOX 59 has learned, because she could not afford an attorney to defend her custodial rights during divorce proceedings from her ex-husband Ryan McConniel.

According to court documents the 5 year old was in good health and happy at the time Huggins lost custody.

Wednesday afternoon Huggins described her heart after losing her daughter as, “broken.”

Her ex-husband Ryan and his new wife Britney McConniel remain in the Delaware County jail. Britney is being held without bond and bond for Ryan has been set at $30,000 cash.

Our deepest sympathies go to dear mother Amber Huggins, first for the loss of her daughter thanks to family court and next for her death at the hands of her daughter’s abusers.

Disturbing Trend of Punishing Mothers Who Failed to Protect Continues

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I just don’t get it.  Indiana judges and prosecutors go feverishly after battered women to punish them for a child that dies at the hands of a father or a male-figure in the household, yet will take children from mothers who report abuse.  What is wrong with these people?

Reflecting back on the recent conviction  Kristina Byers-Escobedo, from February 26th, 2010:

Kristina Byers-Escobedo sobbed quietly this morning as sheriff’s deputies led her from the courtroom of Judge Jane Woodward Miller in handcuffs.  Miller sentenced Byers-Escobedo to 30 years executed, denying the 31-year-old an opportunity for parole.

She also denied a request by Byers-Escobedo’s lawyer to allow his client one day to report in order to say goodbye to her young son.

“I cannot and will not give you additional time to report,” Miller said, explaining Byers-Escobedo should have already prepared the child for the possibility she would be imprisoned.

In sentencing Byers-Escobedo, Miller admonished the mother for failing to protect her daughter, 2-year-old Maya Escobedo, from the child’s father, Valentin Escobedo, who has been charged with murder in the child’s death.

“You told us you were protecting your family,” Miller said, referring to Byers-Escobedo’s explanation of why she ignored signs of abuse by Valentin Escobedo. “… I don’t know what you were protecting. I know what you were not protecting. You were not protecting the one person who was too young and too vulnerable to protect herself.”

WHAT A JOKE:  “You were not protecting the one person who was too young and too vulnerable to protect herself.” When mothers do, they lose their children. It is happening far too much here in Indiana.

And now Rachael Goodman has been harshly sentenced after pleading guilty to neglect.  Did she have any other choice, with Carl Brizzi promising to go full guns after her?  He won’t go after fathers sexually abusing their daughters (with medical proof at that!), but he’ll darned sure go after mothers.  Was she hoping with the guilty plea to avoid a long, harsh sentence, especially since she had been beaten by the perpetrator badly also?

An 18-year-old man was arrested early Thursday morning after his girlfriend and her 14-month-old daughter were taken to a hospital following a brutal beating that left the girl in extremely critical condition.

Rachel Goodman, who is also 14 weeks pregnant, was injured in the incident.  Investigators said some of her injuries came from trying to stop the beating.

Goodman’s mother, Rachel Goodman, pleaded guilty in November 2009 to neglect of a dependent and had agreed to testify against Chism.  Goodman faces a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison, but because she has no prior felony convictions, the entire sentence could be suspended.

(Grrrrr….she got 25 years with 5 years suspended, so much for rewarding her for helping convict the perpetrator).  Our sincere condolences go to Ms. Goodman for all she’s had to endure, and continues to endure from the mother-hating State of Indiana.  Best of luck to Ms. Byers-Escobedo on her appeal also.

Once again, the corrupt bastard judges of Marion County and Carl Brizzi are patting themselves on the back for taking down another mother, one way or the other.