Just to give all of you out there a glimmer of hope…legal custody of my child was returned to me in October 2011, after more than 2 years, being relocated twice (me, that is, for my protection from the abuser responsible for all this), my son being moved from one placement to another to another….and now he’s home and “all mine” again. Of course, this presents an entire new set of difficulities to face.
You see, I am convinced that part of the program used by these agencies is to break the bond between parent and child. So now we are dealing with therapy, meds, and still, after months, working on reestablishing that bond. It’s better now than it was at first, but the issues of me being the parent and in charge is still there. I know this can be an issue for any parent of a pre-teen, but after all we have been through it is more exaggerated for us. Like I said, though, things are getting better, At least he’s home with me, in my legal custody, and we are at last able to move on.
As of June 10 this year, my child has been placed back in my home. Great news, right? To a large extent yes, but then he is here on a “permissive placement” otherwise known as a trial home placement basis. Which means that at any time, for any reason (or no reason), he can be taken out again. Now when you go back and read the posts I have made in the past, you can see just how messed up this entire situation has been. Guess what…although he is home with me, there are still so very many things going on that are more wrong than you can imagine!
Perhaps the biggest problem is this: my child receives SSI. And although him being home means I am carrying the full burden financially for his needs (transportation alone to get him to child care, get me to work and then the reverse at the end of the day is costing me a whopping $27.60 a day…that’s $276 each pay period…I get paid every 2 weeks), the agency in charge pf case management is collecting his ssi…and no, they are not assisting me with the extra finances! They say it is in the works to return his ssi to me, but we are looking at least 2 or even 3 months before that actually happens, if it does at all. Now I ask you, if I am paying out all this extra…transportation, food, laundry, etc., and they are not contributing in the least, where is his ssi going? What are they doing with it? While they are holding onto this money without assisting me with financial needs for this child, I am going more and more broke every day.
Next problem: There has been a serious lack of communication in regards to little things like getting my child registered for school. Didn’t get word until last evening as to the school I need to register him in (there were 2 possibilities) and that I need to get him registered this week (meaning today or tomorrow). The company I work for requires that you put in for approved time off at least 72 hours in advance…so I run the risk of being written up for calling in at the last minute…the end result being my job is at risk (I know, it’s a totally ridiculous policy given that things happen, but that’s the way it is and I can’t do anything about it). Seriously, at the risk of sounding paranoid, sometimes I think they are intentionally setting me up for utter failure. I mean, I have been on this job for almost a year and a half, have been very successful at it, yet run the risk of losing it (as well as everything the money it provides to have…little things like my apartment and all the contents therein) all because this agency has caused so many issues.
And finally, and this is perhaps the most offensive thing of all…and this is really sick folks…again, going back to read how this all started (with my reporting that my child disclosed to me that, while still with us, his father had been molesting him on the way to school back in kindergarten…it took this child almost 3 years to tell me this…and no, the perp is no longer with us…hasn’t been for almost 6 years now)…although my child has disclosed to his therapist the molestation, although the perp is now sitting in prison in the state the act occured on a different, child predator conviction, the state we now reside in STILL has not referred the offense to the state it happened in. Guess what that means…it means that at the end of his sentence, this child molester will be free to walk the streets, molesting more children…and all because this state I live in doesn’t want to fess up to the complete and utter mess they made of this whole thing from the very beginning.
Sick, isn’t it?
Imagine this scenario: You are kicking back in your living room watching the tube when the local police department busts in and arrests you on drug charges. Now, you know that you are perfectly innocent because you don’t use any of that stuff, yet you find yourself standing before his honor the judge anyway. The police claim they have all the evidence they need to put you away on the charges. What you find out months down the line is that they had gone into your neighbor’s home, gathered the evidence they found there and claimed it was YOUR home in which the offending substances were found. Worse still, your lawyer knew about this bogus ‘evidence” and didn’t bother telling you about it!
Preposterous, you say. This kind of thing couldn’t happen here in the good old US of A! Our constitution protects us from that kind of thing! Or so you would think.
Change that scenario a bit…just a little bit…and you’ll see how it can indeed happen. How an agency exists that does this very kind of thing. The agency is CPS, or as it is now known in many places as the Department of Children’s Services. Keep in mind as you read on that, when going out to remove a child from his or her home, there is normally a law enforcement officer in their company. Someone who knows things like rules of evidence…or who should anyway!
OK so here’s what I found out happened. Said law enforcement officer was first to arrive. The paperwork in his possession had the street address on it but not the apartment number (I was living in a 4-plex). Now the street address was on the building but on the side of the front units. The back side, where I lived, wasn’t marked. So said law enforcement officer enters those front units and takes pictures of the filth he finds there…and proceeds to present these pictures as evidence in claiming “unsanitary” conditions in MY apartment! Worse of all, my lawyer knew of these pictures yet said nothing to me about them. Had she even bothered showing them to me, it would have been obvious that they were not of my apartment & their entire case would have flown right out the window.
I don’t care what kind of spin those who perpetrated this fiasco try to put on it, but this is fraud! It is unlawful to manufacture evidence! Remember the OJ murder trial? One of the reasons Mr. Simpson was acquitted was the fact that LAPD was suspected of planting some of the evidence. The prosecution’s case fell apart because of it. Can you imagine what kind of outcome the trial might have had if his “dream team” of lawyers had opted to ignore that little glove?
Can you imagine the difference in the outcome of my case if my lawyer had opted to not ignore the existence of those little pictures?
I doubt I’d be writing this little blog.
March 20. The 1st day of Spring. And my birthday. The weather here today totally reflects my mood. Cold, rainy, overcast. The 2nd birthday since my precious little boy was kidnapped by an agency that is supposedly in existence to protect children but in fact does more damage to families than someone who hasn’t dealt with them could possibly imagine. An agency that tears families apart just because they can.
My son should be here celebrating with me. We should be eating cake & ice cream & laughing about how many candles are on Mommy’s cake. Instead I’m sitting here holding back tears. If there’s anyone out there following this blog, you’ll know this shouldn’t even be happening! I can’t believe it’s still going on. And I hurt. Deeply hurt. It is truly only by the grace of God that I can keep going each day. And it is with His grace I’ll make it through.
Those of you who are praying folks, please pray especially hard for me today. I really need it.
I received some information yesterday that is most disturbing…in fact down right scary! It seems that, in the state I live in at least, the state (in the form of CPS) can try to prevent reunification BECAUSE of my son’s molestation…claiming that I failed to protect him…even though there was no way for me to even know it was happening!
The abuse occurred in the beginning of the 2005-2006 school year. At that point his father, my then husband, was taking him to school in the mornings & I was picking him up after I got off work. After a couple of months, my son started insisting that I take him to school instead. When I asked him why, all he would say is that his dad wouldn’t buckle him up. FYI, the abuse was in the form of touching, so there were no physical indictations that there was abuse. It was enough for me to decide to take some precautions, but not enough to take any kind of legal type action. To be safe, I started taking my son to school, kicked the perv out of my bedroom & brought my little guy in (he was 5 at the time), locking the bedroom door at night, & NEVER allowed my son to be alone with his dad. About 4 years later, when my son finally told me about the abuse, I did exactly what I should have…I reported it (which, as it turned out, was the start of this entire mess…see my earlier posts for that story).
The problem here, not just for me but for any parent of a molestation victim, is that we are at risk of having our children taken from us because of the criminal actions of another person, even if we had no way of knowing the abuse was happening! Even when, once we are suspicious & take action to prevent it from happening again. Even when, once the child has disclosed to us we report it. We can do everything right & STILL be blamed!
Folks, that attitude on the part of CPS can only lead to one result. As more parents become aware of this, even fewer are going to be willing to report the sexual abuse of their children. Which means even more child predators won’t face justice, will remain free to harm even more children.
AND THAT’S JUST PLAIN INSANE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Three weeks ago, my child was moved from a therapeutic group home to a therapeutic foster home. This should be able to be seen as good news as it indicates, or should anyway, that he is on his way to being ready to come home. In actuality, however, it has been a move that has presented additional problems. First, I was allowed no contact what so ever until yesterday when we had our first supervised visit since the move (note that once again, although I did nothing wrong other than to question a determination notice about a report I made about a child molestation, a determination notice that was written up to be more about me, the reporter rather than about the person being reported, my visits with my child are SUPERVISED!)
Prior to this move I had daily telephone contact with my son. There were never any problems or issues with this. And yet, since the move I haven’t been allowed ANY phone contact at all. When I asked after our visit yesterday about getting a phone number so I could start making calls again, I was informed that phone contact hadn’t been approved as of yet. WHAT?!?!?! At least my child heard me ask and heard their answer so he knows he is purposely being kept out of contact with me (I’m sure those in charge of making decisions like that aren’t thrilled about him knowing that they are responsible for us not being able to talk on the phone any more).
Funny…I’m doing everything they have required of me. There’s even someone on their end of this who questions the validity of the case. And still, with each step forward I make, with each piece of news about the molester (who, BTW, is currently sitting in jail awaiting sentencing on child a po**ography conviction but still hasn’t been charged with the molestaion) has come out, things are being made harder on me.
You know, I have to wonder if those who are involved in the “kidjacking” of our precious babies read these blogs. If sharing our experiences could be hurting our efforts to get them back home. I know, that’s probably paranoid type thinking…or is it?
Actually a little more than a year. There will be areas here where my thoughts are a bit more topical than chronological, it will be a little easier to follow my flow & update I hope. I’ll also be giving a little more detail than I have in the past. My intent here is not merely to gripe; instead it is to demonstrate how out-of-control this agency (CPS, Children’s Division, whatever they want to call themselves) has become and how dangerous to our families.
Part 1: The report & determination notice
This whole thing started in Oct of 08 when I reported that my son had disclosed to me that, in the first few months of the 2005-06 school year, his father had been “pulling over on the way to school & touching him” & pointed to his genital area. Had he made this statement to a teacher, it would have, I’m sure, been taken more seriously. Instead, when I received a copy of the determination notice, I was in shock. The town we lived in and the school my son attended were disclosed to a man we were hiding from due to his history of violence. We were no longer safe. Additionally there were a number of out and out lies. The notice stated that I was “going through a divorce” (I’m sure to make it look as if I were trying to make this guy look bad for custody issues), completely untrue. In fact, I had been unable to file a divorce because of financial restraints. The notice also stated I was receiving services through our area’s mental health provider. Again this was an outright lie. In contrast, anything & everything said by the perp was accepted as gospel truth! He said he had never touched his boys “that way”, that he had bot seen the child in over 2 years & that the child wasn’t even in school the last time he had seen him. Even though I could have given the so called investigator proof that this man had lied, I was never contacted before the determination was made.
When I received a copy of the notice, I (in Dec, 08) tried to contact the CPS worker involved in order to 1) let him know where he could obtain information showing the statements made by the perp were false & 2) to ask him to clarify his lies about me. I was told that he was out until after the holidays. When I asked to speak to his supervisor I was told the same thing about her. After the holidays I tried again to contact him. On January 7, 2009, I left a voice mail message that I really needed to talk to him about things in the notice that weren’t true. On the afternoon of Jan 8, 2009, people from this office stormed into my home & took my son.
My son was taken out of my care citing several safety concerns. A few interesting things here. In the determination notice, my home was stated as being adequate. So why was it called unsafe after I made this phone call? Additionally, the deputy from the sheriff’s office was seen going into the apartment of the gal that lived in front of me. The conditions written up as being justification for removing my son were in actuality conditions in her apartment. The paperwork sent over with the deputy didn’t have an apartment number on it, only the street address. The only place the street address was on the building (a 4-plex) was on the side of her unit. And so, he entered her unit and found quite the mess. Again, more lies.
Part 3: Court & “Legal Representation”
What a bunch of you-know-what! At the 1st “hearing” I was granted a court appointed lawyer. Was even told she was one of the best in DFS cases. So, when I took her in copies of all kinds of paperwork showing that their case was other than being presented by them, I figured she would take it in front of the judge and get the whole thing dismissed. WRONG! She dismissed all the evidence I had with the statement that “if we push them, they will only push back harder.” Not once in this whole fiasco has she truly represented me!
As part of my “reunification” plan, I was ordered to take a psych eval & parenting assessment. Which I did right away. The results showed no risk for abuse, no Axis I or II diagnosis, nothing really negative with the exception of low energy levels on my part (gosh, I wonder if that could be explained by the fact that, since our whereabouts were revealed to an abuser, I had only been getting a couple hours of sleep at a time). You would think that would be enough. But no…I was taken to a different gal for a second eval. She apparently wasn’t so favorable…which I guess is what they wanted. That led to probably the most humiliating experience of my life!
At the recommendation of this “expert” I was taken in for a “random” drug test. An observed UA…in other words I had to pee in a cup with someone watching me! Mind you, I have never been arrested for any kind of drug or alcohol related offense. I don’t use drugs…in fact if I take even aspirin I am in more pain than most people would see a doctor for. I don’t drink either, yet I was ordered to contact a rehab place to arrange drug & alcohol assessment. This was dropped when the intake person told my case manager that I didn’t fit the criteria for needing assessment.
OK, so let’s get to the point we are at today. Over a year & my son is still being held captive. The perp I reported & was called a liar about…he’s sitting in jail in the state the offense against my son was committed in (a different state than where this c*** is taking place) awaiting sentencing for a child porn conviction. My son has disclosed about his molestation to his therapist. And with each step showing I was truthful in reporting a crime against my child, things have gotten tougher on me.
Obviously I am not the only parent going through this. This site wouldn’t exist if I was. So what can we, as citizens of this USA do? Our constitutional rights have been tossed out the window. Our characters have been defamed. Our children have been stolen. And, under the current methods, we are basically powerless.
People who are unaware of the underhanded tactics used need to be informed. Our state & federal representatives need to know what is happening to families every day. We have operating in this nation an agency that doesn’t need warrants, probable cause or evidence, just their own say so. They use personal vendettas to destroy lives. They can use even reports of abuse that have been found to be without merit against you, even years after the fact.
It’s going to be a rough road, I know, to get anything done, for the simple fact that we are afraid to confront them. But for our children’s sakes, we have to get the ball rolling somewhere! At the very least there should be accountability, standardization and evidential rules in place to stop their Gestapo like tactics. Ideally, if not disbanded all together so that crimes against children are handled by law enforcement as should be the case, CPS SHOULD BE placed under law enforcement and held to those standards instead of being under Social Services.
Print this out! Show it to your church groups, social clubs, anyplace parents are. Let them know what’s happening! Make them aware that with he power and lack of control that the next child kidjacked by these people could very well be their own.
So now it’s Christmas 2009. Still my son is being held hostage to ptrvent my filing a major law suit against this horrid agency. In spite of the fact that the perp CPS called me a liar over is now incarcerated awaiting sentencing for being a child predator, or perhaps it’s because of…as in they can’t deal with the fact they were proven to be wrong & totally out of line. It’s awful. My child & I were both victims of this man’s actions yet I’m the one being treated like a criminal. Sometimes I don’t think I can take any more of this insane business they have bogged me down in, but I know I have to stay strong for my little guy.
I’ve had people with expertise read the document that began this whole ordeal. All agree that there are, to say the least, HEPA law violations in it. Doesn’t soothe my hurt today though. We should be together. I should be enjoying the excitement on his face as he opens his gifts, not feeling so down that I don’t even want to get dressed. I know today will pass and so too will the harshness of what I’m feeling right at this moment.
Merry Christmas, my precious child. Next year will be better, next year we WILL be spending Christmas together. I’ll find a way to make sure that happens.
Well, in a way it has. This whole thing started this past January (see my first blog here on the fiasco that began this journey I’m on). Since writing last, I have been moved from my home to one DV shelter and now another in order to protect my life. Why, you might ask…well, here’s why:
Now this whole thing started, like I said, in January of 09…although it really started back in October when I reported, as I should have done, that my little boy had reported to me that his dad (how I hate using that word for him) had been molesting him back in kindergarten (little man is now 9). The CPS investigator sent out was this total jerk of an idiot who sent out a determination report finding the report unsubstianted, however, in doing so he wrote up the report to make me look like a lying you know what. So I called him….left a message on his voice mail that I wanted to talk to him about the misinformation contained in the report and the next thing you know my son was being yanked out of my home and care.
The worst part of all this? The so called dad of my son is now incarcerated on felony child porn charges. Convicted of them. Has CPS, now having to see that this man is, in fact, a child predator, done anything to make right the situation? Not at all. Because of the arrest contact with the idiot was cut off…he (fortunately) had no more contact with my precious child. Which put my life in danger as he is one of those who, if he can’t have something, no one else will…so, yes, my life was seriously in danger!
So now, like I said, I am and have been for the last couple of months living in a domestic violence shelter in a city I have never been in before, having to deal with finding work and housing here so that I even have a chance of getting my child back into my custody.
My utmost concern is my son’s welfare, of course….but this whole thing has turned my life inside out…I’m STILL being punished although I did nothing wrong…although the wrongs were done to my son and myself by a wife beating child molester…..where’s the justice in all that?
To be brief, there really isn’t one. Although the unfortunate choice I had made in terms of a spouse (now ex) and in staying with him for as long as I did is facing felony charges of child porn, our local CPS agency is still treating me as though I had lied to them in making the initial report. One worker, who I know from her being involved in getting my child set up with all the services available to him, let me know off the record that they really do need to start believing me.
On the other hand, my son’s therapist (inpatient) is fully supportive of me. My son has repeatedly spoken out about the abuse he suffered at the hands of his so called father. She is even sending a letter to my attorney stating that they really need to get me moved up to where my child is so that we can get the reunification process through. CPS though, it seems, is waiting for the outcome of the perps trial before they commit to anything.