Monday, February 28, 2011

(Brooklyn, NY) Family Court Judge Bernard Graham gives custody of son to homeless father... instead of $90,000-a-year mother

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1361525/Judge-gives-custody-son-homeless-father-Boy-stay-shelter--instead-home-90-000-year-mother.html?ito=feeds-newsxml

Last updated at 8:36 PM on 28th February 2011

A judge decided it was better for a boy to live with his homeless father in a shelter than stay with his $90,000-a-year mother - after the mother criticised the legal process.

Jeanette Traylor, who is a court worker herself, was even denied visitation rights, according to the New York Post

Instead her 17-year-old son is staying with his father, John Jacobs, who 'has been living in storefronts and borrowed rooms and basements' for years, according to court papers.

Homeless shelter: Tilden Hall in Brooklyn, where the 17-year-old will live with his father - instead of his $90,000-a-year mother

Homeless shelter: Tilden Hall in Brooklyn, where the 17-year-old will live with his father - instead of his $90,000-a-year mother - after he was awarded custody

The father 'constantly misled' investigators - and a psychologist testified that he had 'severe reservations' about Mr Jacobs' parenting skills, the court papers said.

But the father and son are now living together in a city-run shelter in Brooklyn, New York.

'I begged the judge please not to play with my son's life,' Miss Traylor, a court clerk in Manhattan Supreme Court, told The Post. 'What my ex-husband does doesn't surprise me.

'But I expected better when I went to court.'

But Mr Jacobs - who split from Miss Traylor in 1995, shortly after their son's birth - insisted to the newspaper that the teenager is better off with him.

'If I was in a cardboard box and if it was better for my son, so be it.

Decision: Judge Bernard Graham hit out at the mother after she criticised the legal process

Decision: Judge Bernard Graham hit out at the mother after she criticised the legal process

'One parent is healthier for the child than the other . . . When you add the whole thing together, I'm better for the boy. That's the bottom line.'

After their split, the couple shared custody until a judge gave Miss Traylor primary physical custody in 2001.

Mr Jacobs decided to challenge the decision and over the last decade, more than 30 petitions and motions have been filed between them.

Their son claimed in 2008 that his mother struck him with an umbrella, according to court papers. Miss Traylor denies the allegation.

Documents also revealed that the mother had been arrested several times - but that she had never been convicted of anything. She claims all of the arrests were at her husband's request.

Earlier this month, Family Court Judge Bernard Graham took custody from Traylor and gave it to Jacobs.

The judge said his decision was based on the wishes of the boy, who, according to the court papers, claimed his mother was 'self-absorbed' and uninterested in his issues.

He had demanded to live with his father, it is claimed.

Before giving his decision, however, the judge hit out at Miss Traylor for being 'quick to offer barbed criticism of the court and the legal process', according to the New York Post.

Judge Graham did not return MailOnline's call.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1361525/Judge-gives-custody-son-homeless-father-Boy-stay-shelter--instead-home-90-000-year-mother.html#ixzz1FIO6doAs

175 Killer Dads: Fathers who ended their children's lives in situations involving child custody, visitation, and/or child support (USA)

Update February 2011

175 Killer Dads: Fathers who ended their children's lives in situations involving child custody, visitation, and/or child support (USA)

An update to our previous 76 Killer Dads, 88 Killer Dads, and 138 Killer Dads lists.

This is NOT a comprehensive list of all U.S. fathers who have killed their children in situations involving domestic violence and/or child abuse. This list is limited to articles I have found where there is an identifiable child custody, visitation, and/or child support angle in the children's deaths. Even then, I can’t claim that this is a comprehensive list of child custody, visitation, and or child-support- related murders. Quite often, newspaper articles just don’t provide enough information to make a judgment call.

There is no time limit to the actual dates of death on this list, though most are comparatively recent— usually (but not always) with an article on the deaths appearing in the last three years or so. (Often it takes years for charges to get filed in these cases, or for cases to go to trial.) Note that there are several cases going back to the 1990s.

Feel free to use this as a data base for additional research or to narrow the deaths down to the time period, geographic setting, or other criteria of your choosing.

If you know of a worthy case that has been omitted, feel free to contact me and I will see about adding the case during the next update. This is very much a work in progress.

Because many have asked which cases specifically involve a family court which ignored the concerns of a protective mother or involved notable court and/or CPS incompetence/corruption, I have marked some of the more egregious cases of that type with an asterisk. Of course, the criterion is somewhat subjective, and is also based on having enough media coverage to discern whether these factors were present. Once again, that doesn’t mean that other cases on this list didn’t involve those factors. Only that I have insufficient information at this time.

Additional information can be found on all these cases by searching the Dastardly Dads site.

175 Killer Dads: Fathers who ended their children's lives in situations involving child custody, visitation, and/or child support (USA)

ALABAMA

Franklin County

Father: PAUL GONZALEZ

Victim(s): Andrea Gonzalez (5 years)

Date of Death: Reported missing in November 1993. Body never recovered.

Custodial father eventually pleads guilty to manslaughter. Stepmother charged with child abuse.

Jefferson County

Father: CORY RICE

Victim(s): Janiya Nicole Hale (1 year)

Date of Death: July 2009

Father, a registered sex offender, is charged with murder. Daughter died during overnight visitation.

Mobile County

Father: JOHN DEBLASE

Victim(s): Natalie Deblase (4 years), Chase Deblase (3 years)

Date of Death: Unclear. Bodies located in December 2010 after children hadn’t been seen for months.

Father was apparently custodial at the time of children’s deaths. Both father, girlfriend are charged with murder.

Montgomery County

Father: ALVIN JOHNSON

Victim(s): Chad (C.J.) Johnson (3 years)

Date of Death: May 2008

Father had been in “custody battle” with mother, and had secured custody just two months before the boy’s murder. Father on trial in November 2010.

Morgan County

Father: GARY LEE WILBOURN

Victim(s): Amy Jean Wilbourn (infant)

Date of Death: December 2008

Father with either “temporary” or “permanent” custody of infant daughter charged with capital murder. In October 2010, father pleads not guilty, with trial scheduled for August 2011.

ARIZONA

Cococino County

*Father: RYAN PETERS

Victim(s): Teigan Peters (aka Teigan Brown) (3 years)

Date of Death: June 2009

Daughter killed in murder-suicide during court-ordered visitation . Mother had applied for orders of protection.

Maricopa County

Father: ALLEN CHAMBERS

Victim(s): Mindi Chambers (17 years)

Date of Death: Assumed to have been murdered around the time she went missing in 1982.

Custodial father ALLEN CHAMBERS is now presumed to have murdered Mindi Chambers around the time she went missing. Daughter had reported sexual abuse to the authorities. Not reported as officially missing till 1995.

Father: JEFFREY DUCHANE

Victim(s): Trenay Duchane (12 years)

Date of Death: November 2008

Custodial father and stepmother convicted of murder.

Father: RAUL MOLINA GONZALEZ

Victim(s): Anthony Gonzalez (11 years)

Date of Death: Summer 2005

Father convicted of murdering son during summer visitation.

*Father: NUSHAWN CAMPBELL

Victim(s): Unnamed son (5 years)

Date of Death: June 2009

Father with sole custody stabs son to death in failed murder-suicide. Mother had been trying to regain custody. In October 2010, father pleaded guilty to 1st-degree murder.

Father: ANDRE LETEVE

Victim(s): Alec Leteve (5 years), Asher Leteve (1 year)

Date of Death: March 2010

Parents in process of getting divorce, but had agreed to joint custody. Sons shot to death in failed murder-suicide. Father apparently "feared" mother would attempt a move away.

Father: SERGIO THOMAS

Victim(s): 7-month-old daughter

Date of Death: December 2010

Father arrested for death of 7-month-old daughter. Parents had “verbal custody agreement” to share children on weekly basis. Dad had history of domestic violence arrests.

Pima County

*Father: CHRISTOPHER PAINE

Victim(s): Ariana Paine (3 years), Tyler Paine (4 years)

Date of Death: 2006

Mother originally got custody in 2003. In January 2006, father asked for informal visitation, which the mother granted. In March, the father refused to return the children. The mother contacted the Tucson police regarding her custody order, and they refused to retrieve the children. Within months the children are dead (exact date unknown, only one body was found). Mother sued City of Tucson CPS, and they settled for $1 million in June 2008. In October 2010, Judge Carmine Cornello dismissed mother’s suit against the police.

CALIFORNIA

Contra Costa County

Father: ERHAN KAYIK

Victim(s): Volkan Kayik (16 years)

Date of Death: July 2007

Custodial father found guilty in 2009 of strangulation death of son.

El Dorado County

Father: DAVID ELIOTT

Victim(s): Chandler Nash-Eliott (11 years)

Date of Death: December 2009

Father not charged in the "suicide" of son. Father had physical custody, parents had shared legal custody. Father had extensive history with CPS regarding neglect, abuse, lack of supervision, etc.

Los Angeles County

Father: DAVID HELMS

Victim(s): Lance Helms (2 1/2 years)

Date of Death: 1995

Custodial dad convicted in beating death of son. Father had obtained custody despite extensive history of violence, drug abuse.

Father: CAMERON BROWN

Victim(s): Lauren Sarene Key (4 years)

Date of Death: November 2000

Father scheduled to go to trial for 3rd time for death of daughter. Daughter was allegedly pushed off cliff during visitation in order to avoid child support.

Father: EDUARDO VILLAREAL

Victim(s): Trudy Bonilla (ex-girlfriend, mother of child), Naomi (ten days)

Date of Death: October 2010

Father in “custody dispute” with mother of newborn child rams his truck into bedroom where his ex, the baby are sleeping. Both are killed.

Orange County

Father: GIDEON WALTER OMONDI

Victim(s): Richie Omondi (4 years)

Date of Death: 2006

Father shared custody with the child's mother. Drowned son to avoid child support. Father convicted of 1st-degree murder in January 2010.

Father: UNNAMED FATHER

Victim(s): Soon to be ex-wife, daughter (8 years)

Date of Death: November 2010

Father in “custody dispute” shoots and kills ex-wife, daughter in murder-suicide.

Riverside County

*Father: ALEXANDRO BAEZA

Victim(s): Isaac Gallegos (2 years)

Date of Death: April 2010

Father charged with murder in the death of son, who was killed during weekend visitation with the father. Parents had never been married and had been in a “custody dispute” for the past year. The “family” had a history with CPS. Father had shown zero interest in the baby for the first year. And yet the judge--in this case Judge John M. Pacheco--awarded the father twice-a-week visitation anyway. He then proceeded to ignore the mother's concerns regarding the child's injuries and signs of psychological trauma. In fact, he threatened to strip the mother of custody for bringing up her concerns. In December 2010, father ordered to trial.

Father: ANGEL GARCIA III

Victim(s): 5-year-old daughter

Date of Death: November 2010

Father, step arrested for murder, accessory to murder. Custodial status unclear.

Sacramento County

Father: ADRIAN RAMON MCGRATH

Victim(s): Jeremiah McGrath (3 years)

Date of Death: March 2010

Son beaten to death in home of father, stepmother

San Bernadino County

Father: JESUS ROMAN FUENTES

Victim(s): Jesus Gabriel Fuentes (4 years)

Date of Death: February 2010

Father crashes car, shoots to death son during visitation. Parents divorced. Father in critical condition from self-inflicted gunshot wound.

*Father: STEPHEN CHARLES GARCIA

Victim(s): Wyatt Garcia (9 months)

Date of Death: January 2010

Father kills son in murder-suicide during court-ordered visitation. Parents never married. Mother had pleaded with 3 judges regarding father's violence, threats.

San Diego County

Father: DENNIS POTTS

Victim(s): Tori Vienneau (22 years), Dean Springtube (10 months)

Date of Death: July 2006

Father is convicted September 2009 in the murders of his former girlfriend and son. Father didn't want to take paternity test, pay child support.

Ventura County

Father: JAMES MULVANEY

Victim(s): Jason Mulvaney (12 years), Jennifer Mulvaney (7 years)

Date of Death: September 2009

Father stabs to death son and daughter in murder-suicide during overnight visitation. Parents had shared custody and were still involved in divorce, custody case.

COLORADO

Arapahoe County

Father: AARON THOMPSON

Victim(s): Aarone Thompson (7 years)

Date of Death: Reported missing in November 2005. Body never recovered.

Father convicted in September 2009 in daughter's murder. Father had custody, as he had abducted the children from mother in Michigan.

El Paso County

*Father: HANIF SIMS

Victim(s): Genesis Sims (9 years)

Date of Death: December 2008

Father obtained custody in New Jersey and retained custody despite child abuse investigations in that state. Father and girlfriend relocated to Colorado. Girl’s remains found in former home’s crawl space in May 2010. In November 2010, Father, girlfriend both charged in girl’s death, ordered to trial.

Jefferson County

Father: JOSEPH TRUJILLO

Victim(s): Adrian Trujillo (5 months)

Date of Death: January 2010

Father charged in death of infant son. Father had physical custody while mother in military. Father alleged to have left baby alone while father went out drinking for 7 hours. Baby later found dead. In October 2010, father sentenced to 12 years in prison.

Logan County

Father: MARK WEEKS

Victim(s): Alexis McClain (3 years)

Date of Death: July 2010

Custodial father, step charged with murder in death of daughter. Non-custodial mother lives out of state, apparently in California. Father’s next court appearance scheduled for January 2011.

CONNECTICUT

New Haven County

Father: MORRIES D. HILL SR.

Victim(s): Morries Hill Jr. (5 months)

Date of Death: 2008

Father charged in connection with the death of son. Baby died from "severe physical abuse." Infant died in father's home during overnight visitation.

FLORIDA

Alachua County

Father: ANTHONY SCOTT ENCLARDE

Victim(s): Ashton (14 months)

Date of Death: January 2011

Father charged with manslaughter. Custodial arrangements not clear, though mother did not live in the home and apparently gave birth in North Carolina. Father on probation for previous child neglect concerning another child.

Bay County

Father: THOMAS EVERETT BROWN IV

Victim(s): unnamed Child (20 months), unnamed child injured (7 months)

Date of Death: August 2010

Father facing open murder count in beating death of 20-month-old child. News accounts mention that parents lived in separate households, but custody/visitation arrangements not explained. Father has violent criminal record.

Citrus County

Father: SPENCER WEAVER

Victim(s): Unnamed son (2 months)

Date of Death: February 2010

Father with extensive criminal background being investigated in death of infant son, who died during visitation with father.

Colllier County

Father: SAMUEL SEJOUR

Victim(s): Elijay Kye Aliazar (3 months)

Date of Death: January 2009

Father had shared custody with infant's mother. Son died of blunt force trauma to the head during visitation. Father charged w. 2nd-degree murder.

Duval County

*Father: JOSI M. HALL

Victim(s): Kyla Hall (1 year)

Date of Death: 2008

Father had sole custody, and had been cleared of previous abuse allegations. Daughter died of blunt force trauma at home. Father convicted of 2nd-degree murder, and in May 2010, sentenced to life in prison.

Father: ERNEST WRIGHT

Victim(s): Mesia Wright (2 years)

Date of Death: November 2010

Girl dies of methadone overdose while in visitation with father. Babysitting girlfriend charged with aggravated manslaughter. Mom had primary custody, but “allowed” child to stay with father when at work or school.

Gilchrist County

Father: ROLAND MATTHEW

Victim(s): Kristina Hepp (4 years)

Date of Death: April 2009

Father filed for custody in November 2008, obtained it in February 2009. Child was apparently sexually abused, battered, and tortured from the start. In April 2010, father pleaded no contest to 1st-degree murder, and sentenced to life in prison.

Hillsborough County

Father: CHAUNCEY ROBINSON

Victim(s): Chavon Robinson (22 months)

Date of Death: February 2008

Father convicted in December 2009 of murdering child during visitation.

Father: JUSTIN GARWACKI

Victim(s): John Taylor Baxley (3 years)

Date of Death: August 2010

Son normally lived with mother in Missouri. Child died during summer visitation with father, girlfriend. Both charged with murder in February 2011.

*Father: DWAYNE POOLE

Victim(s): Ronderique Anderson (16 months)

Date of Death: February 2011

Father acquired custody after the mother of the baby’s under-aged mother died, and baby’s mother was placed in foster care. Father had previous arrests for battery, and is charged with 1st-degree murder.

Jackson County

Father: WESLEY JONATHAN WILLIAMS

Victim(s): Danielle Baker (mother), sons Ahmaad (4 years) and Amarion (1 year), and unrelated infant.

Date of Death: 2005

Father allegedly committed quadruple murder because he was angry about child support.

Lake County

Father: RICHARD L. ADAMS

Victim(s): Kayla McKean (6 years)

Date of Death: 1998

Custodial father beat daughter to death. Had been subject of multiple CPS investigations.

Lee County

Father: MANUEL DE JESUS ROSALES

Victim(s): Karminda Rosales Salazar (20-year-old daughter that survived stabbing), grandson Josue Rosales (2 months)

Date of Death: May 2010

Custodial father sexually abused daughter, she gave birth to older child who survives. Father then attacked adult daughter with knife, and stabbed to death son she had with boyfriend.

Father: RYAN COSTELLO

Victim(s): Darwin (3 months)

Date of Death: June 2010

Father charged with 2nd-degree murder, but in November 2010, Costello released on bond and Judge J. Seals granted him visitation with surviving son.

Orange County

Father: ROOSEVELT BRADLEY II

Victim(s): Roosevelt Bradley III (8 months)

Date of Death: August 2009

Father arrested for murder of infant during visitation.

Osceola County

Father: MELVIN ORTIZ

Victim(s): Unnamed Son (5 years)

Date of Death: July 2009

Son beaten to death while visiting father, stepmother.

Palm Beach County

*Father: TONY CAMACHO

Victim(s): Crystal Camacho (8 years), Nelson Camacho (10 years)

Date of Death: December 2006

Father and mother were finalizing divorce. During Christmas visitation, father stabbed daughter, then killed her and brother Nelson Camacho (10 years) in arson murder-suicide. Mother had unsuccessfully petitioned for protection. Article from November 2010 mentions that surviving mother Jennie Carter is now an advocate for victims of domestic violence.

Pasco County

Father: THOMAS LUDWIG

Victim(s): Diella Ludwig (2 months)

Date of Death: December 2008

CPS granted father THOMAS LUDWIG custody of infant twins. Father charged with 1st-degree murder in Diella's death, and was convicted in November 2010.

Seminole County

Father: FIDEL JUAREZ-AVILA, SR

Victim(s): Aurelia Juarez (14 months)

Date of Death: June 2008

In March 2010, custodial father sentenced to 21 years in prison for aggravated manslaughter in death of daughter.

Volusia County

Father: MICHAEL REESE

Victim(s): Jeremiah Reese (14 years)

Date of Death: September 2009

Jeremiah Reese died of "accidental overdose" at the home of his custodial father. Father had long history of abuse, neglect with CPS.

GEORGIA

Athens-Clarke County

Father: KEITH JERMAINE GRESHAM

Victim(s): Keionte Gresham (4 years), Keion Gresham (7 years)

Date of Death: May 2010

Father shot children to death in murder-suicide during visitation. Had extensive history of stalking, domestic violence.

Clayton County

Father: JAMALL DECARLOS MATHIS

Victim(s): Ja’mari Myckahi Jones (17 months)

Date of Death: September 2009

In November 2010, father on trial for murdering son during visitation, allegedly to avoid child support.

DeKalb County

Father: GARY DETOMA

Victim(s): Gary DeToma Jr. (5 years), Will DeToma (4 years – injured)

Date of Death: July 2010

Father seeking “full custody” charged with murder of 5-year-old son during visitation. Parents had been going through divorce.

Gwinnett County

Father: ELVIS NOE GARCIA

Victim(s): Edward Garcia (1 year), Bradley Garcia (3 years)

Date of Death: February 2011

Father charged in fatal stabbing of two sons, and in critical stabbing of a third son. Father had been in “custody battle” with the mother over the children.

HAWAII

Honolulu County

*Father: NAEEM WILLIAMS

Victim(s): Talia Williams (5 years)

Date of Death: 2005

Custodial father still facing charges in daughter's death. Had gained custody just 7 months before murder.

IDAHO

Ada County

Father: NICHOLAS BACON

Victim(s): Bekm Bacon (8 months)

Date of Death: February 2010

Father shot to death son in murder-suicide. Parents going through divorce, but had joint custody. Infant killed during visitation with father.

Jerome County

Father: ROBERT ARAGON

Victim(s): Sage Aragon (11 years)

Date of Death: December 2008

Custodial father acquitted of involuntary manslaughter in hypothermia death of daughter. Father had told to her to walk to mother's home during blizzard.

Twin Falls County

Father: JIM NICE JR.

Victim(s): Justin Nice (6 years), Spencer Nice (6 years), Raquel Anna Nice (2 years)

Date of Death: 2005

Father murdered children with rat poison during court-ordered visitation.

ILLINOIS

Cook County

Father: JAMES LARRY

Victim(s): Jahad Larry (7 months), Kalesh Larry (3 years), Keyshai Fields (16 years), Tawana Thompson Larry (19 years)

Date of Death: April 2010

Father with extensive criminal background charged in the murder of infant son, wife, two nieces. Had been awarded joint custody of infant through paternity action one week prior to killings.

DuPage County

Father: RICHARD LYONS

Victim(s): Mya (9 years)

Date of Death: July 2008

In January 2011, father finally arrested in stabbing death of daughter. Had been staying with father for summer visitation.

Kane County

Father: ANTONY MANGIAMELE

Victim(s): Riley (2 years)

Date of Death: February 2005

Father kills son in murder-suicide during unsupervised visitation ordered by Judge William Weir. According to October 2010 article, the judge resigned on the 4th anniversary of the boy’s murder.

McClean County

*Father: MICHAEL CONNELLY

Victim(s): Duncan Connelly (6 years) and Jack Connelly (4 years)

Date of Death: March 2009

Father killed sons in murder-suicide during court-ordered visitation. Mother had extensive involvement with the courts trying to prevent contact with father.

Father: JEFF MEECE

Victim(s): Erika Meese (14 months)

Date of Death: August 2009

In September 2010, father found unfit to stand trial for murder, though he had been granted twice weekly visitation. Daughter beaten to death with a baseball bat.

Will County

Father: CHIDI ESI

Victim(s): Nathan Esi (19 months)

Date of Death: October 2009

Father accused of drowning son during visitation.

INDIANA

Delaware County

*Father: RYAN MCCONNIEL

Victim(s): Lauren McConniel (5 years)

Date of Death: March 2010

Custodial father, step charged with felony child neglect charges. Girl died of severe malnutrition despite CPS investigations. Evidence that child was also sexually abused. Mother lost custody during divorce the year before in Knoxville, Tennessee. She was not represented by a lawyer.

Green County

Father: RONALD A. BOHANNON

Victim(s): Travis Bohannon (14 months)

Date of Death: August 2009

Father separated from wife. Son "accidently" shot during visitation. Father convicted of reckless homicide January 2010.

Lake County

Father: CORDELL RICHARDSON

Victim(s): Eboni Richardson (19 months)

Date of Death: August 2009

Father shot daughter during visitation. Didn't want child's mother to do a move away.

Father: TERRY BETHEL (aka Terry Noel)

Victim(s): Josiah Shaw (13 months)

Date of Death: January 2008

Father allegedly arranged to have visitation with son, then shot him to death to avoid child support.

Father: LEON BURNS

Victim(s): Leon Walker (5 years)

Date of Death: April 2010

Boy found bound, tortured and beaten to death in home of custodial father. Death ruled a homicide.

Marion County

Father: JOSHWA CARLISLE

Victim(s): Ex-girlfriend Tracie Shannon (22 years), Juliana (9 months)

Date of Death: September 2010

Father arrested in arson murder of ex-girlfriend, infant daughter. Father allegedly wanted to avoid paying child support.

Tippecanoe County

Father: CHRISTIAN GAUVIN

Victim(s): Aiyana Gauvin (4 years)

Date of Death: March 2005

Child beaten to death after months of abuse and neglect. Custodial father sentenced to 50 years in prison.

KANSAS

Montgomery County

*Father: RANDY COONS

Victim(s): Brooklyn Coons (23 months)

Date of Death: January 2008

Girl died in home of custodial father. Girlfriend convicted of 1st-degree murder. Mother deceased. Safety concerns of maternal grandparents ignored by KS SRS.

Shawnee County

Father: JAMES KRAIG KAHLER

Victim(s): Karen Kahler (44 years), Emily Kahler (18 years), Lauren Kahler (16 years), Dorothy Wight (89 years)

Date of Death: Nov. 2009

Parents were in the process of divorcing, reportedly "sparring over children."

Sumner County

Father: UNNAMED FATHER

Victim(s): Caden Michael Reemes (4 years)

Date of Death: August 2009

Child asphyxiated at the home of his custodial UNNAMED FATHER.

KENTUCKY

Anderson County

*Father: TIMOTHY FRAZIER

Victim(s): Cole Frazier (21 months)

Date of Death: May 2009

Father obtained custody with police assistance through fraudulent EPO. Shot son to death in murder-suicide. Mother suing police, city.

Clark County

Father: PATRICK WATKINS

Victim(s): Michaela Watkins (10 years)

Date of Death: 2007

Custodial father, stepmother found guilty of murder in girl's death. Girl removed from mother's home by social workers.

LOUISIANA

Bossier Parish

*Father: WESLEY LOWE

Victim(s): Anna Celeste Lowe (5 years)

Date of Death: January 2011

Father got “temporary custody” after accusing mother of abuse. Though charges were determined to be unfounded, father managed to get 4 district judges to sign off 5 times on extending order. Father had history of domestic violence, drug abuse. Father charged with negligible homicide, step with 1st-degree murder.

Calcasieu Parish

Father: WILLIAM STEWARD VINCENT

Victim(s): Savanna Vincent (5 years)

Date of Death: June 2008

In July 2010, custodial father, step finally indicted for 2nd-degree murder.

East Baton Rouge Parish

Father: CLAYTON LEE MURPHY JR.

Victim(s): Juwan Murphy (8 years), Tayshuan Murphy (2 years)

Date of Death: October 2008

Father stabbed children to death during visitation in order to “get back” at his estranged wife. Had threatened to harm the children before. Convicted of 1st-degree murder in June 2010.

Livingston Parish

Father: EDUARDO KYLE HERODIAS

Victim(s): Kaylene Herodias (4 months), Kayla Herodias (4 months – severely injured)

Date of Death: May 2010

Father in “custody battle” with babies’ mother charged with 1st-degree murderer in death of twin daughter. Dad admitted shaking the babies during his visitation time.

Orleans Parish

Father: DANNY PLATT

Victim: Ja'Shawn (2 years)

Date of Death: January 2010

Father arrested in murder of son during weekend visitation; alleged that father had been trying to avoid paying back child support.

Pointe Coupee Parish

Father: AARON BOWMAN

Victim(s): Aaron Bowman, Jr.

Date of Death: November 2009

Father had "temporary" custody of son, 2-year-old daughter when son beaten to death. Father charged with 1st-degree murder.

MAINE

Kennebec County

Father: SHANE SOUCY

Victim(s): Connor Soucy (4 months)

Date of Death: August 2009

Infant became "unresponsive" during visit with father. Later died at hospital.

MARYLAND

Baltimore County

*Father: MARK CASTILLO

Victim(s): Anthony Castillo (6 years), Austin Castillo (4 years), Athena Castillo (2 years)

Date of Death: March 2008

Mother had tried to stop father from having access, but blocked by courts. Children murdered during court-ordered visitation.

Father: STEPHEN NELSON

Victim(s): Turner Jordan Nelson (3 years)

Date of Death: February 2008

Murdered by father by being thrown off bridge. Father and mother had argued in court over custody. In January 2011, father sentenced to 50 years in prison.

Father: TIMOTHY LEWIS

Victim(s): Chloe Lewis (6 months)

Date of Death: October 2010

“Sole Guardian” father charged with murder in suffocation death of daughter. Mom apparently lives in a group home and was “refused” custody.

Father: TYRONE HAMBER

Victim(s): Melonia Hamber (2 years)

Date of Death: April 2010

Father charged in daughter's beating death. Child had been visiting with father for two weeks prior to her death.

Hartford County

Father: KEATON IRONS

Victim(s): Shamyrah Irons (1 year)

Date of Death: May 2010

Child beaten to death while child was “in the care and custody of her father.” Father charged with murder.

Montgomery County

Father: GERALD ROBERT WELLS

Victim(s): Jacob Matthew Dunn (23 months)

Date of Death: October 2006

Parents were never married. Father frequently protested against paying child support. Just months after filing for joint custody, father murdered son by asphyxiation during “planned visit.”

Talbot County

Father: RICHARD W. SPICKNALL II

Victim(s): Destiny Array Spicknall, wounded (3 years), Richard Spicknall III (2 years)

Date of Death: September 1999

Father with joint custody fabricates story of car high jacking, children found shot in car seats. Mother had reported previous domestic violence incident. Father charged with murder.

MASSACHUSETTS

Bristol County

Father: KRISTOPHER GRIFFIN

Victim(s): Kaitlyn (6 years)

Date of Death: July 2009

Father allegedly murdered daughter because he was concerned about a possible move away.

Essex County

Father: ERNESTO GONZALEZ

Victim(s): Giovanni Gonzalez (5 years)

Date of Death: August 2008

Boy “disappeared” during “scheduled visit” with father. Formal visitation agreement had yet to be worked out. Father had previous criminal convictions, including assault. Has apparently confessed to killing the boy, but no criminal conviction. Body has not been found.

Worcester County

Father: LESLIE G. SHULER

Victim(s): Nathaniel Turner (7 years)

Date of Death: June 2009

Father charged with beating death of son. Took place during father's summer visitation.

MICHIGAN

Lenawee County

Father: JOHN SKELTON

Victim(s): Andrew Skelton (9 years), Alexander Skelton (7 years), Tanner Skelton (5 years)

Date of Death: Presumably around November 2010

Children were presumably killed during court-ordered visitation. Father has reported many stories—that he left them with a woman, that he left them with a mysterious “organization.” However, police strongly suspect the children were murdered. No bodies have been found.

Macomb County

Father: JEFF WOLFENBARGER

Victim(s): Lily Furneaux-Wolfenbarger (2 years)

Date of Death: November 2010

Parents “shared” custody. Stepmom “ suspected” in girl’s death.

Montcalm County

*Father: OLIVER BRAMAN

Victim(s): Elaine Kaczor-Braman (stepmother), Nicholas Braman (9 years)

Date of Death: October 2007

Custodial father with history of domestic violence, child abuse kills second wife, son in murder-suicide. Mother had reclaimed custody of older sons after they ran away. Father pleaded guilty to abusing the older boys, but failed to show up for sentencing. CPS, however, refused to remove youngest son. In July 2010, protective mother filed federal suit against child protective services.

Oakland County

Father: JOHN KELLY

Victim(s): unnamed infant (13 weeks)

Date of Death: February 2010

Infant died during unsupervised visitation.

Ottawa County

Father: SALVATOR FLORES

Victim(s): Sandra Flores (10 years)

Date of Death: August 2010

Girl dies after suffering convulsions in the home of her custodial father. Father had history of complaints with CPS, and girl and previously been removed from the home.

St. Clair County

*Father: JOE GALVAN

Victim(s): Prhaze Galvan (3 years)

Date of Death: January 2010

Child died of blunt force trauma in home of custodial father, stepmother. Both face murder charges. In August 2010, convicted of murder and torture, and later sentenced to life in prison. Later ombudsman report refuses to clarify why father with history of domestic violence, child abuse, and criminal behavior had been granted custody, and how he was able to retain it.

Wayne County

*Father: STEVEN NICHOLSON

Victim(s): Ella Grace Stafford (15 months), Jonathan Sanderlin (13 months)

Date of Death: October 2010

Father had full custody of son, “partial” custody of daughter. Both children lived with him. Charged with felony murder in the scalding/drowning deaths of the two children. Appears mother of son lost custody when accused of “kidnapping” for refusing contact/visitation. Father has history of domestic violence, drug/alcohol abuse.

MINNESOTA

Ramsey County

Father: JOHN OLSON

Victim(s): Mikayla Olson

Date of Death: 2004

Father given joint legal custody despite repeated threats to kill daughter, ex-wife. Two years after divorce, dad murdered daughter during “parenting time.”

MISSISSIPPI

Hinds County

Father: ZACCHAEUS BROWN

Victim(s): Jaheem Brown (4 months)

Date of Death: February 2011

Father charged with capital murder. Mother only 15 years of age, parents did not live together. Child fatally injured while at father’s home during weekend visitation. Not clear as to whether visitation voluntary or court-ordered.

MISSOURI

Cass/Jackson Counties

Father: CLINTON GALLAGHER

Victim(s): Alex Gallagher (6 years)

Date of Death: December 2010

Father kills son in murder –suicide after judge ignored mother’s request for order of protection, temporary custody.

Father: MARK GUENTHER

Victim(s): Elizabeth Guenther (18 months)

Date of Death: February 2010

Father to be charged with 2nd-degree murder. Baby suffered fatal skull fracture during father's weekend visitation.

*Father: DAN PORTER

Victim(s): Sam Porter (7 years), Lindsey Porter (8 years)

Date of Death: June 2004

Father murdered children during court-ordered visitation. Had extensive history of domestic violence.

Father: MARINO SALINAS

Victim(s): Avee Hunter (4 months)

Date of Death: April 2010

Father charged with 1st-degree murder. Prosecutors say that father plotted to kill baby to avoid child support.

Greene County

Father: KYLE BAYLOR

Victim(s): Vaniessa Baylor (1 year)

Date of Death: February 2010

Father charged with 2nd-degree murder in daughter's death. Parents had separated, but father had been serving as "caregiver" for past week. Father had been scheduled to start paying child support to mother.

Howell County

Father: UNNAMED DAD

Victim(s): Zeke Breeds (6 years)

Date of Death: September 2010

Boy died of drug overdose while living with custodial dad, step. Both are charged. Mother lives in St. Louis.

St. Louis County

Father: Nathaniel Robinson

Victim(s): Desmon Valenzuela (3 years)

Date of Death: 2007

Father obtained custody 1 month before child's beating death. Convicted of involuntary manslaughter.

MONTANA

Missoula County

Father: ROBERT J. WILKES

Victim(s): Gabriel Wilkes (3 months)

Date of Death: October 2008

In June 2010, custodial father convicted of homicide in death of infant son.

NEBRASKA

Dodge County

Father: LUCAS PETERSON

Victim(s): Trista Peterson (1 year)

Date of Death: January 2007

As of October 2010, the Nebraska Supreme Court has affirmed that this “sole caretaker” father can be charged in child abuse resulting in death, unlawful burial. In April 2007, Peterson had cut a deal with prosecutors and lead authorities to daughter’s grave. In January 2011, father finally pleads guilty to manslaughter. Has never been reported in the media what happened to the girl’s mother.

NEVADA

Clark County

Father: BRANDON TODD ARDUINO

Victim(s): Brandon Christopher Arduino-Boggs (13 years)

Date of Death: September 2009

Son killed in auto homicide case where father DUI. Parents had been in lengthy child custody case.

Father: ALEX KOPYSTENSKI

Victim(s): Giovani Kopystenski (5 years)

Date of Death: July 2009

Custodial father. Autistic son "accidentally" shoots himself in head after finding gun in father's car. In January 2011, father sentenced to 2 – 20 years in prison.

Father: RICHARD MARTINO

Victims(s): Zander Martino (2 years)

Date of Death: July 2007

Father had gained custody just two months before son's beating death.

NEW HAMPSHIRE

Hillsborough County

Father: MANUEL GEHRING

Victim(s): Sarah Gehring (14 years), Phillip Gehring (11 years),

Date of Death: July 2003

Father with shared custody was still in custody “dispute” with mother. When father was supposed to return the children to their mother, father shot and killed the children and buried their bodies along an interstate in Ohio. Bodies not found till 2005. Father confessed to the murders, and committed suicide in prison.

NEW JERSEY

Essex County

Father: TAMIR LITTLE

Victim(s): Neveah Turner (3 years)

Date of Death: November 2009

Father gained custody in July 2009, and began abusing the child almost immediately. Father arrested, charged with murder in May 2010.

Father: SHAMSIDDEN ABDUR-RAHEEM

Victim(s): Zara Malani-Lin Abdur (3 months)

Date of Death: February 2010

Father had been “feuding” with mother about how often he got to see the baby. While mother was getting a protection order, father abducted baby from babysitting grandmother. Baby was “allegedly” thrown off bridge. In May 2010, baby’s body was found and positively identified.

Passaic County

Father: EDELMIRO GONZALEZ

Victim(s): Adrian Gonzalez (7 years)

Date of Death: November 2009

Father in "bitter custody dispute" with "estranged" wife. 7-year-old son shot to death, 11-year-old son, wife, in critical condition.

NEW MEXICO

Bernalillo County

Father: RICHARD ROBERT SANCHEZ

Victim(s): Richard Jr., Daniel, and Christopher Sanchez

Date of Death: August 2001

Father "went missing" with sons during custodial visit. Bodies recovered, identified in July 2009.

Santa Fe County

*Father: MELVIN MARTINEZ

Victim(s): Derek Martinez (12 years), Devin Martinez (10 years)

Date of Death: June 2010

Father shoots sons to death in murder-suicide during summer visitation. Protective mother’s concerns dismissed by judge.

NEW YORK

Bronx County

Father: ANTHONY MIKELL

Victim(s): Kevin Mikell (2 years)

Date of Death: February 1996

Father granted custody when mother being “probed” for child abuse. Father had previously been arrested for disorderly conduct, resisting arrest. Child beaten to death.

Columbia County

Father: FRANKLIN HANKERSON

Victim(s): Khliff Taylor Hankerson (5 years)

Date of Death: April 2010

Son killed in murder-suicide during visitation.

Erie County

Father: JAMES E. KENT

Victim(s); Joshua Kent (3 years)

Date of Death: March 2005

Sole custody father beats son to death.

Genessee County

Father: UNNAMED FATHER

Victim(s); Marcus Peters (6 years)

Date of Death: October 2009

Child dies during weekend visitation with father, but authorities say death not "suspicious."

Kings County

Father: CHRISTOPHER WILLIS

Victim(s): Datwan Murray (2 ½ years)

Date of Death: June 1993

Mother had legal custody, but father had refused to return child after visitation. Father appeared to be a major drug dealer with drug arsenal.

Monroe County

*Father: MARK RESCH

Victim(s): Hunter Resch (7 years)

Date of Death: February 2010

Child shot to death in murder-suicide during court-ordered visitation. Father had history of domestic violence, mother had filed two orders of protection.

Orange County

Father: PATRICK FITZGERALD

Victim(s): Leanne Fitzgerald (wife, 38 years), Ashley Fitzgerald (7 years), Shane Fitzgerald (4 years)

Date of Death: September 1998

Parents had not separated at time of murders. But father had history of domestic violence, and filing for orders of protections, child custody in Orange County Family Court.

*Father: CHRISTOPHER RHODES

Victim(s): Jerica Rhodes (7 years)

Date of Death: January 2005

Sole custody father convicted in daughter's stabbing death. Father had extensive history of domestic violence.

Richmond County

Father: DARRELL TAYLOR

Victim(s): Josiah Taylor (2 years)

Date of Death: November 2010

Boy killed during visitation with father. Babysitting girlfriend, father each blaming the other.

NORTH CAROLINA

Caldwell County

Father: ADAM BAKER

Victim(s): Zahra Baker (10 years)

Date of Death: Fall 2010

Step currently charged in girl’s murder. Custodial father has not been charged, though girl was apparently repeatedly abused in the home. Father relocated from Australia.

Carteret County

Father: MICHAEL LEE WYNE II

Victim(s): unnamed daughter (11 years)

Date of Death: June 2010

Father reports “accidentally” shooting and killing daughter just one day after she arrived for summer visitation from Arkansas.

Dare County

Father: DOUGLAS MONT

Victim(s): Catrina J. Mont (9 years), Daniel Preston Mont (6 years), Theresa Lynn Mont (4 years)

Date of Death: February 1995

Father with visitation abducted children from home in Delaware, then shot them to death in murder-suicide in North Carolina.

Edgecombe County

Father: BRICE MCMILLAN

Victim(s): Tyler Brice (13 years)

Date of Death: June 2008

Custodial father, stepmother convicted of 2nd-degree murder. Boy tied to tree, died of dehydration, heat exhaustion.

OKLAHOMA

Bryan County

Father: WOLF ABEL

Victim(s): Cheyenne Wolf (11 years)

Date of Death: April 2008

Custodial father, stepmother charged in girl's death. As of September 2010, girl’s remains still unclaimed. February 2011: Father found guilty of enabling child abuse, child abuse by neglect, unlawful removal of a body. Has never been reported how or why the father had custody, or what happened to the girl’s mother.

OHIO

Cuyahoga County

Father: ANTHONY JOHNSON

Victim(s) Anthony Johnson Jr.

Date of Death: August 2009

Father accused of beating child to death during visitation.

Franklin/Delaware Counties

Father: DANIEL J. DOBSON

Victim(s): Nicole Dobson (15 years), Sarah Dobson (11 years)

Date of Death: December 2009

Father had physical placement of 15-year-old daughter. "Shared parenting" plan in place with divorced mother. Girls shot to death in murder-suicide.

Hamilton County

*Father: CHRISTOPHER DANGERFIELD

Victim(s): Tyrese Short (3 years)

Date of Death: December 2010

Father charged with aggravated murder. Had been granted custody just 7 months before, though father had a lengthy criminal record including assault of a police officer.

Father: JAMES LYONS

Victim(s): Jaden Jenkins

Date of Death: September 2010

Father given custody after mother checked herself in for mental health treatment. Father charged with capital murder.

Highland County

Father: WESLEY COONROD

Victim(s): Steven Coonrod (3 years), Thomas Coonrod (4 years)

Date of Death: March 2010

Father with “full custody” charged with murder in arson deaths of two sons. News accounts mention history of domestic violence, alcoholism, “suspicious” fires at previous homes. In October 2010, Coonrod convicted on two counts of child endangering; jury deadlocked on murder, arson charges. In February 2011, convicted of two counts of involuntary manslaughter.

Stark County

Father: JAMES MAMMONE III

Victim(s): Macy Mammone (5 years), James Mammone (3 years), Margaret Eakin (57 years)

Date of Death: June 2009

Divorced father convicted of stabbing children, beating to death former mother-in-law in January 2010.

OREGON

Clackamas County

Father: DONALD L. COCKRELL

Victim(s): Alexis Pounder (3 years)

Date of Death: January 2010

Father, mother had shared custody. Father, girlfriend charged with beating, starving girl to death. Mother allegedly blocked from seeing child by father.

Lane County

Father: RICHARD RAUCHER

Victim(s): Erin Raucher, Aidan Raucher (no ages given)

Date of Death: September 2010

“Despondent” stay-at-home dad granted “joint custody” in divorce. Kills daughters in murder-suicide, though mother had offered to pay father child support.

Mutnomah County

Father: CHRISTOPHER ROSILLO

Victim(s): Oleander Labier (5 years)

Date of Death: April 2010

Custodial father, fiancée charged in girl's death.

PENNSYLVANIA

Dauphin County

*Father: STEPHEN S. DIXON

Victim(s): Jayahn Cox-Phoenix

Date of Death: May 2010

Parents had no formal custody agreement. Father played no role in child’s life until January 2010. Father allowed visitation by mother. In March 2010, father refused to return child or allow maternal contact. Mom’s early May 2010 petition for emergency custody denied by Judge Andrew Dowling despite allegations of child abuse. Custody hearing set for June 2010. Child dies before then of traumatic brain injury. Though death ruled a homicide, no charges filed as of September 2010. Grandmother plans lawsuit against county Children and Youth.

Franklin County

Father: CONWAY WELLER

Victim(s): Leeairra Ann Weller (5 years), Caleigh Ann Weller (8 months)

Date of Death: October 2010

Father with “shared custody” kills two daughters through carbon monoxide poisoning in murder-suicide.

Philadelphia County

*Father: DOMINGO "ANIBAL" FERREIRA

Victim(s) Charlenni Ferreira (10 years)

Date of Death: October 2009

Girl died from abuse in the home of her custodial father, stepmother. Father later (allegedly) committed suicide in jail cell.

Wyoming County

Father: JAMES ALAN AUSTIN

Victim(s): Unidentified infant

Date of Death: 1995

Single father acquired custody through surrogate mother. Pleaded guilty to 3rd-degree murder in baby’s beating death.

SOUTH CAROLINA

Anderson County

Father: JAMES T. DICKERSON

Victim(s): Jeremy Dickerson (7 years)

Date of Death: July 2009

Father with "full custody" charged in son's beating death.

Berkeley County

Father: ROGER “TONY” WILLIAMS

Victim(s): Rodricus Williams (2 years)

Date of Death: June 2010

Father, girlfriend charged with homicide in death of son during summer visitation.

Chester County

Father: UNNAMED FATHER

Victim(s): Xymerra Evans (11 months)

Date of Death: September 2009

Child sexually abused, beaten during visitation with father. Later died at hospital.

Chesterfield County

Father: MITCHELL CHARLES RIVERS

Victim(s): Mitchell Alexander Rivers (3 months)

Date of Death: 2005

Single adoptive dad convicted of homicide, sentenced to life in prison in February 2011.

TENNESSEE

Dyer County

*Father: CHRISTOPHER MILBURN

Victim(s): Stevie Noelle (15 years), foster father Todd Randolph, foster mother Susan Randolph (injured)

Date of Death: August 2009

Daughter disclosed sexual abuse by custodial father. Children’s Services placed her with foster family in the same neighborhood. Father shoots daughter, foster parents in murder-suicide. In August 2010, non-custodial mother files lawsuit against the State of Tennessee.

Fayette County

Father: SEAN LEIFER

Victim(s): Gage Leifer (9 months)

Date of Death: December 2009

In November 2010, father charged with murder. Boy’s death took place during father’s holiday visitation.

Shelby County

Father: CURTIS LEE MORRIS, JR.

Victim(s): Isaiah Snipes (16 months)

Date of Death: November 2009

Father had just obtained custody of son, 3-year-old daughter in September 2009. Father charged with 2nd-degree murder.

Warren County

Father: MITCHELL STONE

Victim(s): Kayndace (3 years), Akeelia (1 year)

Date of Death: May 2009

Custodial father, stepmother charged in deaths of two girls.

TEXAS

Bexar County

Father: DOMINIQUE REED

Victim(s): Zaniyah Reed (2 months)

Date of Death: October 2010

Father accused of killing infant during visitation.

Denton County

Father: DUKE WATROUS

Victim(s): Ashley Watrous (10 years)

Date of Death: December 2009

Custodial father charged in shooting death.

Donley County

*Father: ROBERT MONROE BABCOCK

Victim(s): Chance Mark Jones (4 years)

Date of Death: January 2011

Custodial father charged with capital murder. Boy beaten to death just weeks after father gained custody. Father had previously been uninvolved in child’s life.

Gaines/Yoakum Counties

Father: MARIO ROMERO

Victim(s): Mitchell Romero (3 years), unnamed mother

Date of Death: October- November 2009

Mother reportedly murdered by father during child abduction. Son later killed in car accident.

Guadalupe County

*Father: DAVID BRASSE

Victim(s): Sarah Brasse (8 years)

Date of Death: February 2009

Custodial dad accused of medical neglect in death of daughter. Mother had been trying to regain custody since 2007. September 2010: Father indicted on charges of injury to a child. CPS had previously investigated the case two years before child’s death.

Harris County

Father: ALEX MCGOWEN DUNCAN

Victim(s): Tekerrious “TK” Jackson

Date of Death: July 2010

Father charged with murder in beating death of son during summer visitation.

*Father: MOHAMMAD GOHER

Victim(s): Saeed (12 years), Saedah (14 years), Aisha (7 years)

Date of Death: September 2010

Despite an extensive history of domestic violence, father granted unsupervised visitation. Children shot to death while sleeping. Father charged with capital murder.

Jasper County

Father: LEO DESMOREAUX IV

Victim(s): Triston Dobbins (21 months)

Date of Death: December 2007

Boy died of head injuries while visiting father, stepmother. Father on trial for capital murder in January 2010.

San Jacinto County

*Father: PREDRAG PERISIC

Victim(s): Deyan Perisic (10 years), Danyela Perisic, injured (12 years)

Date of Death: December 2010

Father gained custody in Montreal, Canada in April 2010, and moved the children to Cold Spring, Texas. Mother regained custody in October 2010, and the children “disappeared” shortly thereafter. Father charged with shooting children when police tried to reclaim them.

Potter County

Father: ROBERT NUNEZ

Victim(s): Miguel Angel Nunez (18 moths)

Date of Death: 2004

Father had custody at the time of the baby’s “disappearance.” Mom was scheduled to get custody back due to custodial interference. Body not found until December 2010.

Travis County

Father: LEONARD “IVAN” SOLIZ

Victim(s): Julian Soliz (5 years)

Date of Death: April 2010

Custodial dad claims he was in jail on probation violation when son beaten to death, allegedly by girlfriend.

UTAH

Salt Lake County

*Father: CLINTON HART

Victim(s): Vanessa Medina (4 years)

Date of Death: June 2010

Dad got custody of child as part of “messy” divorce. Took children from Oregon to Utah. One and a half years later, father charged with felony murder. In October 2010, father pleaded not guilty.

VIRGINIA

Chesterfield County

Father: BRANDON L. PARKER

Victim(s): Elijah Parker (2 months)

Date of Death: June 2010

Custodial dad charged with 2nd-degree murder.

Norfolk County

*Father: JOSHUA SAWYER

Victim(s): Carly Sawyer (5 years)

Date of Death: June 2009

Custodial father, stepmother charged with 2nd-degree murder. Mother lost custody during divorce, father denied mother contact. In October 2010, father sentenced to life in prison after conviction.

WEST VIRGINIA

Mercer County

*Father: RONALD HOLCOMB

Victim(s): Brooklyn Holcomb (5 years)

Date of Death: January 2007

Custodial father convicted of 2nd-degree murder in daughter's death. Mother had lost custody the year before after applying for child support.

WASHINGTON

Grays Harbor County

Father: MICHAEL VANDERVEER

Victim(s): Ti-Ryn Emery (4 ½ months)

Date of Death: October 2010

Father arrested in death of infant son. Parents “not together” and baby had been in father’s “care.”

Snohomish County

Father: STEPHEN BYRNE

Victim(s): Haley Byrne (9 years), Kelsey Byrne (11 years)

Date of Death: November 2004

Father who was “fixated” on his custody rights (and essentially had joint custody) kills daughters in murder-suicide. Father had history of domestic violence.

WISCONSIN

Saulk County

*Father: DAVID R. YATES

Victim(s): Savannah Yates, Tyler Yates (3-week-old twins)

Date of Death: April 2008

Father charged with 1st-degree intention homicide. Despite being on probation, father granted weekend visitation. In October 2010, father convicted, sentenced to life in prison.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

How the media can stop its biased reporting about domestic violence and homicides

How the media can stop its biased reporting about domestic violence and homicides

From Justice's Posterous. I have cited some of these concerns myself about domestic violence coverage in the media. But this is a very complete and concise list. Reporters take note!

http://justice.posterous.com/how-the-media-can-stop-its-biased-reporting

How the media can stop its biased reporting about domestic violence and familicides

Don't refer to domestic violence as a "dispute." Abusing someone is not a quarrel.

Don't call him a "nice guy." Nice guys don't murder women and children. Being cordial to his co-workers doesn't make him a "nice guy".

Don't write more positive comments about the perpetrator than about the victim.

"Snapped" is not a mental diagnosis. Most perpetrators have a history of control, jealousy or abuse (even if his neighbors really weren't close enough to him to know about it.)

Don't call him a "man" if he was a "father" or "husband" of the victim -- especially if you would use "mother" for a female perpetrator. The relationship is newsworthy.

Don't imply that it was caused by a "custody dispute". Custody issues are another manifestation of an abuser's harassment, intimidation, and punishment of a woman.

Say whether the perpetrator had shared child custody or visitation rights so the public gets to know about bad policies and decisions in our family courts.

Find out why a child victim lived with the father -- and where the child's real mother is.

Don't call stepmothers "mothers"-- especially if they were criminally complicit.

Report perpetrators' prior charges or convictions (yes, you can).

Don't call men's lies "hoaxes" or other euphemisms. Call them lies or false allegations.

Don't use "alleged" to describe acts that were witnessed, confessed, or proved.

Don't call violent crimes against others "tragedies".

-- Partly based on "ten tips" information provided by stopfamilyviolence.org

Also see http://justice.posterous.com/chesterfield-indiana-man-was-facing-child-mol

and http://justice.posterous.com/johnson-city-tennessee-father-an-ex-con-with

How the media can stop its biased reporting about domestic violence and homicides

How the media can stop its biased reporting about domestic violence and homicides

From Justice's Posterous. I have cited some of these concerns myself about domestic violence coverage in the media. But this is a very complete and concise list. Reporters take note!

http://justice.posterous.com/how-the-media-can-stop-its-biased-reporting

How the media can stop its biased reporting about domestic violence and familicides

Don't refer to domestic violence as a "dispute." Abusing someone is not a quarrel.

Don't call him a "nice guy." Nice guys don't murder women and children. Being cordial to his co-workers doesn't make him a "nice guy".

Don't write more positive comments about the perpetrator than about the victim.

"Snapped" is not a mental diagnosis. Most perpetrators have a history of control, jealousy or abuse (even if his neighbors really weren't close enough to him to know about it.)

Don't call him a "man" if he was a "father" or "husband" of the victim -- especially if you would use "mother" for a female perpetrator. The relationship is newsworthy.

Don't imply that it was caused by a "custody dispute". Custody issues are another manifestation of an abuser's harassment, intimidation, and punishment of a woman.

Say whether the perpetrator had shared child custody or visitation rights so the public gets to know about bad policies and decisions in our family courts.

Find out why a child victim lived with the father -- and where the child's real mother is.

Don't call stepmothers "mothers"-- especially if they were criminally complicit.

Report perpetrators' prior charges or convictions (yes, you can).

Don't call men's lies "hoaxes" or other euphemisms. Call them lies or false allegations.

Don't use "alleged" to describe acts that were witnessed, confessed, or proved.

Don't call violent crimes against others "tragedies".

-- Partly based on "ten tips" information provided by stopfamilyviolence.org

Also see http://justice.posterous.com/chesterfield-indiana-man-was-facing-child-mol

and http://justice.posterous.com/johnson-city-tennessee-father-an-ex-con-with

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Eric Holder “ Why Are Mothers Who Are Victims of Domestic Violence Losing Custody to Abusers?” (fatherhood.gov) of course.

“and if so what does that relationship look like?”  -Eric Holder

It look like (fatherhood.gov) Holder Knows Abusers get Custody of their Children, HE SUPPORTS IT! And Finances it. WTF?

AG Eric Holder

Eric Holder Knows about Batterers Getting Custody and HE SUPPORTS it with Fatherhood.gov.

Last year 2010 he plays a mentor to Fathers in Prison getting out and being 'dad'. See Fathers Day 2010 where Obama gave 500 Million dollars MORE to the Fatherhood Initiatives.

See Video here:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eRJBkoq1DXs

Obama steps up fatherhood advocacy with new mentoring initiative: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wpdyn/content/article/2010/06/21/AR2010062100006.html

Original Domestic Violence speech of Holder here:http://www.justice.gov/ag/speeches/2009/ag-speech-090602.html

 

FATHERHOOD Funding $500,000,000.00

IMG00177

 Motherhood Funding $0.

Fuck that shit.

Mothers time to March!

 

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more information endorsed by www.AmericanMothersPoliticalParty.org

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Monday, February 21, 2011

UPDATE: From the Mothers Rally In Washington, DC on Feb 13th, 14th, 2011

www.mothers-of-lost-children.com

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Our Heroes

The Mothers Movement is patterned after all movements that oppose human rights violations:

  • Madres de los Desaparecidos (Mothers of the Disappeared) movement in Argentina http://blog.buzzflash.com/editorials/103,
  • African American civil rights movement in the United States http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/African-American_Civil_Rights_Movement_(1955%E2%80%931968)
  • Women's movement that stopped a civil war in Liberia

     

    February 13, 2011

    On Sunday February 13, twenty to thirty mothers and children participated in a vigil and demonstration in front of the White House for two hours. They held one big banner, three large double-sided signs on poles, and several other large signs.

    The purpose was to express grave concerns about five hundred million dollars ($500,000,000.00) designed to encourage fathers to pay child support and provide abusers with supervised visits.

    Instead, this gender-biased project provides legal services to batterers, molester, felons and drug addicts who avoid paying child support by getting custody. Safe mothers are put on supervised visitation. Children's continued outcries of abuse are ignored.

    We want the President to know our tax dollars are destroying children's lives, not improving them.

    Federal Fatherhood Initiatives

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    February 14, 2011

    A press conference and speak out were held on Monday, February 14 at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to inform them how their fatherhood programs impact children.

    Advocates joined the speak out. A television reported came by, but security staff forced him to leave. Fortunately, he had a zoom lens, so could film the event from afar. We don't know if he was able to air the story on Channels 4, 5 or 9.

    About half way through the speak out, several Homeland Security vehicles arrived. A small squadron of large uniformed federal agents announced that the group was on Federal property and told us to leave or be arrested.

    After a lively discussion from citizens whose taxes provide HHS with money for the property, the mothers, children and advocates (including 2 attorneys) marched off, finishing the speak out while moving along peacefully.

    The march continued up Independence Ave., past the three House of Representative buildings, turned left on First Street and ended at the Senate buildings.

    Many of the mothers stood with the signs and banners during the next several hours in front of the Senate buildings, while others met with Senate aides and distributed packets of information.

    A courageous kid told Senate aides how she was forced to reunite with her sex offender father.

    A mother explained how she was turned away from federally-funded HHS legal services because she is a mother, not a father.

    Two attorneys, two counselors, and several mothers discussed how the HHS fatherhood program backfires, leading to destructive outcomes for children.

    Family Court Related Research and Articles

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    February 15, 2011

    The next day, one stalwart mother continued to distribute the rest of the packets and flyers to the remaining Senators. She found that Senators and their aides recognized her white t-shirt with Mothers of Lost Children in black letters on the front. Our emblematic uniform is being noticed - an excellent sign.

    http://americanmotherspoliticalparty.org/

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    Mothers Day 2011 Demonstrations

    • Our next events will be on Sunday May 8, Mothers Day and Monday, May 9, 2011. We hope to have Mothers of Lost Children t-shirts for sale in advance. Those who are not able to come to Washington DC can organize a speak out at your local courthouse on Monday May 9 and wear the t-shirt 'uniform'. If needed, wear a white scarf over your face to prevent recognition and retribution by the court. White pants or skirts complete the ensemble.

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  • Sunday, February 20, 2011

    Sham in Shawnee County (Topeka, Kansas) Claudine Dombrowski and her daughter Rikki.

    Sham in Shawnee County (Topeka, Kansas)

    Sham in Shawnee County (Topeka, Kansas) The last time I did court watch for protective mother CLAUDINE DOMBROWSKI, I called my subsequent posting on the experience "Showdown in Shawnee County." See the post here:

    http://dastardlydads.blogspot.com/2010/02/showdown-in-shawnee-county-we-finally.html

    I can't even call the hearing held on October 19, 2010 a showdown. It was just a sham.

    Let's do a little review. Claudine is a battered mother who lost custody of her only daughter in an ex parte hearing in 2004. (Ex parte means the mother wasn't even represented at the hearing.) Since then, she has had very little visitation. The hearing in January 2010 (see post above) was supposed to fix that. And finally, Claudine was awarded two hours of unsupervised visitation on Sunday and telephone contact twice a week. We figured it was a start.

    Well, this was not to be. And not because of anything Claudine did.

    As Claudine testified, visitation went well. She taught her now teenage daughter to drive. They shopped. They went to Barnes and Noble. They talked about girl stuff. Boy stuff. Just like any other mother and daughter. In fact, Claudine was able to enjoy her first mother's day with her daughter in ten years. There were no negative interactions. In fact, it looked like some serious healing was going on.

    And in that lays the problem. You see, abusers and their enablers don't like healing. They find that supremely threatening to their power and control. So of course, the process must be stopped lest their domination of the child and the overall "situation" be compromised.

    So in May 2010, all visitation stopped at Dad HAL RICHARDSON's personal discretion--which he admitted during his own testimony. He made the unilateral decision that he would no longer take his daughter to the law enforcement center for visitation (presumably at her "request"--but more on that later.) He made sure that during the times of designated phone contact, the phone was never answered as it was set on fax. (Dad admitted under oath that the phone does go to fax mode when not answered--though he denied "inhibiting" phone access, which is not surprising. But then, how did Mom know to testify that the phone was set on fax when she called? Oh those little details....) But of course, Dad didn't exactly encourage or welcome contact either--that much was evident. In fact, it was pretty clear to me that he was extremely negative about Claudine, and doing his best to crush any contact between her and her daughter.

    But like many abusers, he projected his own motives onto the child, now a teenager. SHE was the one who was "uncomfortable." She was the one who was "afraid." Afraid of what? Physical abuse, sexual violence? No, there was no evidence of that beyond vague innuendos about "fighting" that allegedly occurred in the distant past (These innuendos weren't even brought up in January. Must be a new game plan.)

    Apparently we are supposed to believe that this teenage girl is "afraid" because Mom allegedly doesn't "follow the rules." What rules? Apparently the court's rules regarding discussion of this case.

    All this was echoed by Guardian ad Litem JILL DYKES. And once again, just as in January, Ms. Dykes didn't even feign professional neutrality in this case, as she literally sat at Daddy's elbow the whole time.

    Are you kidding me? The typical teenager would blow off a parent's attempt to discuss court matters--ASSUMING any such discussion took place, which Claudine denies. They certainly wouldn't be "afraid" of such a discussion. Annoyed perhaps. But not "afraid" or traumatized. This is just classic projection. That this teenager is such a hothouse flower that she is somehow irreparably injured by any possible or potential references to her parents' legal issues, which I'm sure she already knows all about anyway. Nonsense.

    I would humbly suggest that it is Hall Richardson and his enablers who are "afraid" of any possible open or frank discussion of this case. Or any contact between this mother and daughter. And their little "feelings" shouldn't play any part of this.

    Under Kansas law, visitation isn't shut off because somebody is "uncomfortable" for vague and specious reasons. If that were the case, then controlling and manipulative parents would be cutting off access for whatever reason they dreamed up that day.

    Unfortunately, given the dynamics of domestic violence, children who are in the control of abusers often find it necessary to parrot what the abusers want for their own survival. Which makes if very difficult for this child to speak up and articulate what she wants--except in private to her own mother.

    And frankly, this ordeal shows a complete double standard. Were this a custodial mother blocking visitation for such vague and specious reasons, she would no doubt be labeled as an "alienator" with "parental alienation syndrome" (PAS). And the situation would be addressed immediately--either visitation would be enforced by the courts or the mother would lose custody all together. But I digress.

    So no visitation from May to the present. But this actually was a minor issue as far as the court was concerned.

    No, once again our major concern was Claudine's political activity. The players in Shawnee County are very upset with how well known this case has become (my last blog posting on this case had readers as far away as Australia.) And they are blaming Claudine for all of it, even though when pushed, Judge DAVID DEBENHEIM fiercely denied that he was trying to "stomp" on Claudine's first amendment rights. (Huh. Could have fooled me.)

    But even in cases where OTHER bloggers like Nancy Carroll at Rights for Mothers had discussed this case (http://rightsformothers.com/), Claudine was blamed. In fact, the opposing attorney submitted into evidence printouts from NANCY's blog to show that Claudine was out of compliance with their gag order. Message to the Hoffmans: Nancy is not Claudine. I'm not Claudine either, for that matter. And you can't shut us up.

    And honestly, did the Hoffmans really have to embarass their employee like that? They trotted out a young and painfully ignorant employee of theirs to "testify" about Claudine's "alleged" facebook and twitter activities. This fresh-faced young woman--no more than a high school graduate with a few "computer" classes--earnestly told us that every posting and link on somebody's facebook page had to personally "approved" and/or "posted" by that person. Yes, dear friends. She did say that. And meant it too, so far as I can tell. I won't give her name, though it's in my notes. I refuse to further humilate her. But honestly, your great aunt Rose probably knows more about facebook than this girl.

    So the significance of this was what? There are supposedly "references" to her case on Claudine's facebook page! Oh the horror! And you know what? This blog may very well end up with a link on Claudine's facebook page, too--through an automatic feed mechanism. It will go straight to facebook--even when Claudine is sleeping or brushing her teeth. Or sitting in court. Because you know what? Claudine is a well networked activist with probably hundreds of facebook friends working on issues related to child abuse, domestic violence, human rights, and family court reform. Many of us have discussed this case before. Just as we have discussed many other cases like this one, where the courts have backed up the abuser and shut out or ignored the protective mother. And for your information, you'll find articles and links about those cases as well.

    And all this policing of Claudine's personal and political activities on the internet is particularly hypocritical when you consider the following: Attorney JASON B. HOFFMAN and GAL JILL DYKES had no qualms about violating professional ethical boundaries and becoming facebook "friends" with this child! (I saw the screen shots.) Mom can't even post a photo of her daughter per court order, but these folks feel free to do as they like. Not that the judge was interested in this matter at all. Big surprise there.

    And this is the crux of the matter. What the court in Shawnee County REALLY doesn't like is that--as they put it--this lady "has a cause." Or she has "become a cause." They don't like the "venom" (i.e. the truth) that has come out about this case, and the attention it has received nationally and even internationally. They don't even like Claudine's facial expressions! (Yes, the judge made a point of addressing this. "You are your own worst enemy!" he thundered at Claudine--apparently over some grimace or frown that I didn't see.)

    So make sure you never show anything but a happy face in front of Judge Debenham, even when you are possibly losing all contact with your only child!

    Claudine is supposed to hear later this afternoon what the court's decision is--after her daughter will presumably be allowed to speak her mind with the judge. But of course, she can't really speak her mind--not as long as she's a minor and dependent on her father.

    We are not optimistic as to the outcome.

    But you know what? In a little over two years, this girl ages out of the system's control over her life. Perhaps then, real change will come about. Abusers and their enablers often win the battles. But they seldom win the war. That puts off any real healing in this case for another two years.

    But at least it's something to hope for.

    Continue reading at NowPublic.com: Sham in Shawnee County (Topeka, Kansas) | NowPublic News Coverage http://my.nowpublic.com/world/sham-shawnee-county-topeka-kansas#ixzz1EXbxjvG1

    Sen. Scott Brown, a perplexing connection -- ‘The message coming through is when males complain of abuse it's real and different from females who are crazy liars.’

     http://www.boston.com/bostonglobe/editorial_opinion/oped/articles/2011/02/20/for_brown_a_perplexing_connection/

    JOAN VENNOCHI

    The Boston Globe

    For Brown, a perplexing connection

    In light of his sexual abuse revelation, why did he back Jeff Perry?

    SENATOR SCOTT Brown’s revelations about a childhood that included sexual assault by a summer camp counselor are genuinely sympathy-inducing.

    But, they also make you wonder: in light of this searing experience when he was 10, how could Brown endorse Jeff Perry, the Republican congressional candidate, who, in 1991, allegedly stood by as a 14-year-old girl was sexually assaulted by a fellow police officer?

    The victim, Lisa Allen, came forward during the race that Perry ultimately lost and said that Perry “had to hear my screaming and crying. Instead of helping me, Jeff Perry denied anything happened.’’

    It’s an eerie echo of the personal trauma Brown reveals in his book, “Against All Odds.’’ As he tells “60 Minutes’’ correspondent Lesley Stahl, he never went to police or any authority — and told no one, not even his mother — because his abuser told him: “If you tell anybody, you know, I’ll kill you. I will make sure that no one believes you.’’

    Adds Brown in the interview that will be aired tonight: “When people find people like me at that young vulnerable age, who are basically lost, the thing that they have over you is, they make you believe that no one will believe you.’’

    Despite his own horrific experience, Brown still chose to believe Perry over Allen; or, if he didn’t believe him, he still backed him for an important political position. Given that Brown is the father of two daughters, his loyalty to Perry was always curious. The revelations in his book make it even odder. In response, Brown said there is “no correlation’’ between his story and Allen’s and it is “really inappropriate’’ to link them.

    Brown’s candor about his own past won instant praise from victims of child sex abuse and their advocates. It sends a powerful message to others who suffered abuse, they said.

    Five years ago, Brown was among supporters of a state bill that extended the period of time in which a victim of sex abuse could file charges against a perpetrator. He called sexual abuse the “number one public safety issue affecting us here in the Commonwealth,’’ according to the State House News Service. He also cosponsored a federal bill that would limit the ability of those convicted of sex abuse from working in a variety of settings. When Brown was running for US Senate, he and Democratic opponent Martha Coakley said they would ask Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley to release the names of all priests in the archdiocese who were credibly accused of sexual abuse. (Only one legislator, former state senator Marian Walsh, called for Cardinal Bernard F. Law to be prosecuted when the clergy abuse scandal rocked the Boston Archdiocese.)

    Brown’s book is perfectly timed, from both marketing and political standpoints.

    His dramatic disclosures overshadow those of Governor Deval Patrick, whose new book, “A Reason to Believe,’’ addresses race issues and his wife’s depression. And Brown’s book puts the Massachusetts senator back in the spotlight just as talk about the 2012 Senate race starts heating up.

    Brown’s tough childhood was a general part of the narrative when he won the Senate seat held for decades by Ted Kennedy. But his pickup and semi-nude Cosmopolitan photo spread got most of the attention.

    In his book, which goes on sale tomorrow, he also reveals that it took two photo shoots to get the famous 1982 centerfold. The first time, “I looked pale and I wasn’t physically toned; I probably needed to lose 10 pounds,’’ he wrote. When he returned after a crash diet of three cans of tuna a day, “I was bronzed and toned.’’

    Even Brown’s glamour shot has an “everyman’’ story behind it, leading to this question for Massachusetts Democrats: can anyone beat Brown?

    Democrats still find it hard to accept that Kennedy’s seat went to a Republican who brilliantly rechristened it “the people’s seat.’’

    Now, Brown will be collecting new accolades for bravery. Given Patrick’s tome, it’s hard to tag him as uniquely opportunistic.

    Home where abused twins lived was a house of horrors

     

    http://www.miamiherald.com/2011/02/19/2076037/victor-and-nubias-house-of-horrors.html

    CHILD ABUSE TRAGEDY

    Home where abused twins lived was a house of horrors

    The 3-bedroom home where two abused twins lived resembles a fortress — cloaked in shrubs, protected by cameras and secluded behind a gate.

    BY CAROL MARBIN MILLER AND DIANA MOSKOVITZ
    CMARBIN@MIAMIHERALD.COM

    Jorge and Carmen Barahona had custody of fraternal twin foster children for three years and were moving slowly toward adoption when they hit a formidable obstacle: a stubborn court-appointed guardian.

    Paul Neumann, a volunteer guardian-ad-litem, had seen something in the West Miami-Dade couple that scared him, and he said so to everyone in the child welfare system who would listen.

    The Barahonas sought help from an administrator with the foster care agency that oversaw their case. And when that fell short, they prevailed to a higher authority: then-Gov. Charlie Crist.

    In a series of three letters spanning the summer of 2007 through early 2008, the Barahonas accused Neumann of conspiring with employees of the Miami-Dade school system, “tampering’’ with witnesses and trying to snatch the twins from their custody. Neumann, they wrote, was violating their civil rights.

    “They have been deceitful with us all along,” the Barahonas wrote in a June 4, 2007 letter to Crist, “and we feel that we have been taken for fools.”

    Florida child welfare administrators now claim that they were the ones who were deceived.

    On Feb. 10, the Department of Children & Families’ child abuse hotline received a report that the Barahonas were binding the twins, Nubia and Victor Doctor, hand-and-foot and forcing them to stand in a bathtub for hours at the family home in West Miami-Dade. Investigators had yet to find the twins when Victor was discovered in a pickup truck on the side of Interstate 95 in West Palm Beach doused in chemicals and in the midst of seizures. Hours later, police found Nubia’s body in the truck’s flatbed, stuffed in a bag and drenched in chemicals. A source said Friday the children may have been sprayed with pesticides.

    DCF administrators have declined repeatedly to release records on the couple, though they say some documents may be forthcoming.

    But several records obtained last week by The Miami Herald, along with interviews of neighbors and child welfare workers, paint a portrait of a couple determined to raise their adoptive family their own way, shielded from the prying eyes of child-welfare workers, in a house cloaked by thick, overgrown shrubs.

    “All roads lead back to that house,” DCF’s top Miami administrator, Jacqui Colyer, said last week.

    SUBURBAN VENEER

    Jorge Barahona was born in Nicaragua; Carmen in Cuba.

    They married on Jan. 19, 1996, in Coral Gables. She was 45; he was 38.

    Carmen Barahona has worked for several years for one of South Florida’s largest medical practices, Pediatric Associates. Her husband owned a pest control company, and operated out of a red pickup truck that carried lethal chemical in plastic jugs.

    The couple had another, rather substantial source of income: state subsidies for the four foster children they adopted. In court last week, Circuit Judge Cindy Lederman ordered that the roughly $950-per-month in adoption subsidies for the three surviving children be immediately discontinued. The amount likely reached $1,200 when Nubia was alive.

    The Barahonas lived in a typical western Miami-Dade suburb, close to a hospital, a public school and filled with families whose children move easily between English and Spanish.

    The Barahona home, a three-bedroom, one-bath, at first glance passes for the best-kept home on their suburban block, with a gleaming front driveway of fresh pavers, a coat of light-colored paint and a lawn full of lush landscaping. But look closer, and it resembles a well-manicured fortress, armed with heavy shrubbery to keep away glancing eyes and cameras that peered out at visitors, showing those inside whoever came near the front door.

    A black metal gate, more than four feet tall, keeps passersby from setting foot on the front yard. Tall wooden planks on the side of the house, bearing Beware of Dog signs, obscure any view from the side. Palm trees and tall shrubs line the front of the house, obscuring the windows.

    Thick shrubs grown so tall they brush against the roof guard each side of the front doors like centurions. The heavy tangles of branches and leaves on both sides of the front entrance mean that neighbors like Leida Alonso, who has lived next door for more than five years, can glance over and not even see if the door is open.

    What went on in the house was a “family secret’’ that was never to be discussed, one of the Barahonas’ surviving adoptive children — as well as the couple’s biological granddaughter — told investigators in recent days.

    ‘NEVER SAW A KID’

    In all her years in the neighborhood, Alonso said, she saw Jorge Barahona maybe five or seven times. She never saw anyone else at the house at all, she said.

    “I never saw his wife, never saw a kid,” Alonso said

    Across the street, Hilda Duque said in five years in the neighborhood she only saw children with the couple once. About six months ago, she saw two small children. She thinks they were coming or going to the beach because a little girl was wearing a bathing suit.