Williams Trial – Day 9: Testimony of Williams Son

The Skagit Valley Herald reports on the court session of Aug 7, 2013.  It is pretty much more of the same.  The only new info seems to be that Carri would play the audio Bible for Hana while she was locked in the closet in an effort to change her thinking.  I don’t even know how to respond to that.   Using the Word of God as part of a torture cannot be a good thing.

This article says that Hana’s biological cousin was set to testify this afternoon.  A tweet from Gina Cole told us that his interpreter was MIA and his testimony had to be postponed until Thursday, Aug 8.

Here is the story on KiroTV.

Maureen takes a close look at the Williams Adoption Case in Case Study, Part 1: The Williamses’ Adoption Agency

I would like to make note that I added a very interesting (while disturbing) article to yesterdays post in case you missed it.  The thing which I found so interesting was that while Immanuel was being questioned, the defense lawyers were asking him leading questions and when he would deny something, they would act as if he had not denied it.  I sure hope that the jury made note of that.

Williams Trial – Day 8: Testimony of Williams Daughter Continues

The  Skagit Valley Herald report for the morning of Tues Aug 6, is not for the faint of heart.  One of the biological daughters describes exactly what happened on the night that Hana died and I believe that her testimony is going to turn out to be very instrumental in proving that Carri guilty of homicide by abuse.

Here is the story (with video) from KiroTV.  This story tells us that the daughter testifying is Sarah.  It also tells us that the sons who were planning to take the 5th amendment have been given immunity and will testify which kind of contradicts the article in the Skagit Valley Herald which only says that they might be offered immunity.

Immanuel returned to testify this afternoon but the only information I have found about that is these 2 tweets from Gina Cole.

 

 Edited to add:  A new article by the Skagit Valley Herald has been posted which has more info.  Note that this article is Subscriber Content and will count as one of the 5 free articles we are allowed each month.  I have read many lately which did not, and have not quite figured out the whys and wherefores of that.

Williams Trial – Day 4: Testimony of Immanuel’s Therapist

Here is the link to Maureen’s report for Wednesday, July 31, 2013.  As usual, any potential witnesses and jurors should stay away from both this site and hers.  I will include a very brief summary below for the faint of heart and the time-strapped.

Here is a report from Tadias.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013 was taken up with the testimony of Julia Peterson, Immanuel’s Therapist.  She is deaf, as is Immanuel, and testified with the help of two hearing interpreters.  She began working with Immanuel in Dec 2011.

Ms. Peterson testified that Immanuel was very fearful of making mistakes and that he is suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PSTD.)  The defense lawyers tried to get her to agree that it was possible that his PSTD came from trauma he suffered in Ethiopia, but she was very firm that it came from the trauma which he suffered at the hands of the Williams. The defense lawyers also tried to get her to agree to hypothetical statements which she refused to do.

 

Williams Trial – Day 2: First Day of Immanuel’s Testimony

Yesterday, Monday July 29th, was Immanuel’s first day of testimony.  He is scheduled for 3 half days.  Here are the reports I have found so far for that day.

Komo News reports on Immanuel’s testimony. Also, someone who apparently knows the family attempts to explain what happened in this comment.  Edited to note that the comments have been stripped from this article.

Kiro TV reports on Immanuel’s Testimony in Boy tells jury his adopted parents beat him until he bled.  From the video which accompanies this story, I found out that they played the 911 call in court today and that Immanuel will testify for 2 more days.  As usual, this story/video is not for the sensitive because of child abuse triggers.

Edited to add:  Maureen has finally posted her report of yesterday’s testimony.  This is a hard case to watch and I’m not at all surprised that she was not ready to post last night.  While not easy to read, I think that all but the most sensitive could handle it.  She does mention upsetting things, of course so those with abuse triggers should probably stay away from this case entirely (as should any jurors and potential witnesses.)

Williams Trial – Day 1: Opening Statements

Maureen starts her report today with a warning for prospective witnesses and all jurors to abstain from reading her blog.  I must agree with her and include this blog in that restriction.  There is a LOT here which is off limits for witnesses and jurors, and it is best to err on the side of caution.

She then went on to discuss the courts reaction to her blog which must have given her quite the adrenaline rush.  I can only imagine.  Then the motions of the morning and on to the opening statements.

I will now make a disclaimer that the sensitive  should probably not read the opening statements.  In fact, the entire case is very upsetting.  This case is a very upsetting and disturbing case and not for the faint of heart.  For that reason, I will attempt to keep you up to date without giving you the gory details.

The Prosecution gave opening statements in which they outlined the deplorable treatment of Hana and Immanuel.  They started out treating them fine but when their behavior did not meet the Williams’ standards, they escalated their treatment from bad to worse.  Their punishments were cruel and abusive by pretty much anyone’s definition.

Carri’s Defense Lawyer made opening statements in which he explained how Carrie had tried to get Hana back into the house and warmed up but was unable to.  While admitting that her discipline was excessive, he asked if it was “substantial bodily harm.”  I’m not positive, but I believe that means that he was questioning if it was the discipline which caused her death.  As I understand it, that is the real question.  He then went on to respond to many of the prosecution’s points.

Larry’s Defense Lawyer described Larry’s role in the family and how the family worked.  They had a large family and a lot of rules.  They were starting to doubt the effectiveness of spanking as it did not seem to be working during the last year as the two adopted children had become very oppositional. She went on to discuss the issues of knowing Hana’s exact age and blamed Hana’s weight loss on medical issues beyond the Williams’ control.

A large part of Larry’s defense seems to be that he was not around that much and that Carrie was in charge of most of the running of the house while he was working to provide for the family. He was not even home the night that Hana was dying. Oh, and he gave them ice cream once. That was apparently a very important point since she reminded them of that again at the end as she urged them to find him not guilty.

Now, here are some news stories about the trial today.  Again, these links are not for the faint of heart.

Trial begins for couple accused of starving adopted daughter on King 5.

Trial begins for parents accused of killing adoptive daughter on Komo News.

 

Williams Trial – Day (-3): Jury Selection

If you are following along at home, you will want to read Maureen’s Update on the Williamses’ Trial: July 23 in which she describes in impressive detail the narrowing down of the jury pool from over 160 to about 80.  I found this account quite interesting, especially as the potential jurors were asked to discuss how they feel about spanking, when it becomes abuse and their definition of torture.

There is also an article in the Skagit Valley Herald about today’s court session.  I will not be linking to this newspaper much in the near future since they only allow 5 views of their articles per 30 day period and I have already used up 3 of them.  Since Maureen does such a good job of reporting, I see no reason to pay for a subscription.  In the even that Maureen cannot attend, I will get information from other newspapers.

And, in case anyone is wondering why I am covering this, Cindy from Under Much Grace ties it together.

Williams’ Trial Begins Today

The Seattle Times reported on the trial of Larry and Carri Williams which begins today with jury selection.  I will be posting  updates as once a day, editing the daily post as I add new information to each day.

Update:  Komo News reports that jury selection has begun and gives a recap of events up to now.

Do The Newsboys Promote Corporal Punishment?

Dulce De Leche explains the ties that the contemporary Christian music group, The Newsboys has to the Patriarchy/Quiverfull/Stay-At-Home-Daughters movement in Why I Burned My Newsboys CDs.

More Court Cases Involving Abused Adopted Children

I have been watching 2 very sad cases in the news since October 2012.  I have not mentioned them before now because neither of them seem to be following any particular extreme teaching.  They are both about Christian adoptive parents who apparently tried to control their adoptive children using adversarial parenting and corporal punishment and ended up almost killing them and are now being tried for abuse.

The first case is the case of Douglas and Kristen Barbour in Franklin Park, PA. He is a Deputy Attorney General. They are accused of abusing and starving their 2 children adopted from Ethiopia. They recently regained custody of their biological children.  There was mention in this article[article no longer available] of their defense lawyer saying that they “did their best to cope with the children’s extraordinary needs.”  Update: They were going to do a deposition of the 5 year old but decided against it.

The other case is the case of the Russel and Mona Hauer. The Hauers live in North Mankato, MN. It appears that their adversarial parenting caused them to starve their 8-year-old adopted son. They took him to the hospital severely malnourished and weighing only 35 lbs. Part of this was because of existing problems the boy had and part was their failure to get help and their way of trying to control the situation. In a news story published today, I see that their parental rights over this child have been terminated. There is a quote in this story which I find very interesting:

[The judge] said the Hauers failed to follow professional advice on services he needed and how to address behavioral challenges. He also faulted them for their “aversion to traditional health care beliefs and practices,” and said their “highly moralistic” efforts to correct his behavior were the opposite of what he needed.

This very much suggests to me that there is Christian corporeal punishment and adversarial parenting involved so I decided that it was time to at least bring these to your attention.  I will continue to update this post as seems appropriate.

I should probably mention poor little Rodrick Arrington in Las Vegas here.  He was not adopted, but it was his step father who beat him to death while his mother helped.  I’m very unsure of this case, but certainly adversarial parenting and corporeal  punishment came into play.  But then, they do in all abuse cases and there are hundreds every year.  🙁  The purpose of this blog is not to discuss undisputed abuse.  It is to discuss abusive teachings which many loving and sane parents are not recognizing as abuse and to give Biblical arguments against such teachings.  That is why this post is categorized as “blog.” Because it is technically off topic and does not quite fit into any of my categories. Although, I admit that I’m seeing a grey area and might end up changing my mind about that at some point. I just don’t see anyone defending any of these abuse cases or denying that is is abuse, except the defendants and their lawyers.

Discipline VS Neglect

Note from Hermana Linda: We appreciate getting comments and read every one.  This comment from Pam is so long that Steph decided to respond in a post, so here it is.

Hi Steph,
Though I don’t consider myself to be “pro” spanking, I am pro-discipline, and I do believe that infrequent spanking can be part of an over-all discipline plan, when done properly and with love. I have raised two boys and I have two grandsons. I’ve also, taught children and volunteered to work with children in many circumstances. I care about kids and child abuse is a deep concern of mine. I was an abused child, in the forms of medical neglect, emotional neglect, emotional abuse, emotional incest, and sexual abuse by a predator. I also, found myself in several abusive situations as an adult and I agree that children are born with natural ways of standing up for themselves that shouldn’t be taken from them. We all need to be able to protect ourselves. I also, believe that children can be defiant and they need help in learning to use defiance as a way to protect themselves and not as a means of ending up in prison. Part of the neglect I experienced as a child had to do with discipline. I don’t remember any spankings but I was allowed to eat only candy to the point of having fillings in all of my teeth by the time I was six (I also, had abscesses) and all of my teeth falling out by the third grade. My parents excuse this by blaming it on me and my refusal to eat so, they let me eat what I wanted and all I wanted was candy. I was also, sick a lot and they gave me alcohol as medication, I think it put me to sleep and I was less of a bother. The first time they gave me too much and made me drunk was when I was cutting my first teeth. They’ve always told this as a such a funny story… [Read more…]

Bill To Protect Adopted Children Being Considered

House Judiciary Committee is considering a bill to protect adopted children as a response to the Hana Alemu “Williams”  case. More information in this article in The Capitol Record.

Reasons Not To Spank

Dara Stoltzfus has been thinking about Euphemisms as she gives us 20 Reasons not to Spank.

And for more food for thought from Dara, check out her thoughts on Abortion: A private matter?

Raising Children to Not Accept Abuse

Dara Stoltzfus shows us how we can raise children to not see abusive behavior as normal in Wives With Knives.

Dara Stolzfus has many other excellent posts. I have already linked to many of them. I must now link to this post about Consequences and how we react when we mess up.

While I’m at it, I will also link to another interesting post called Looking Up.

Update on Williams Court Case

The Williams Court Case is in the news again.  This story in The Komo News reviews what happened to Hana Alemu “Williams” and how charges came to be filed over a year ago and brings us up to date with where the case stands now.  For more info about this case, please see my Hana Amelu “Williams tag.

According to this news story:

Hana’s death also plays a prominent role in a new report ordered by the governor’s office on the severe abuse of adopted children. The state doesn’t do any background checks or home checks on international or private adoptions, and is looking into standardizing those procedures.

The report referenced can be found here, but remember that as it discusses this case and other severe abuse cases, it is probably not for the faint of heart.

I do not have the recently released DSHS report, but I do have the very disturbing sheriff’s report which was released last year.

 

 

Delaware Bans Spanking?

Delaware’s new anti-abuse law prohibits causing pain to children. Does this effectively ban spanking? Here are a few articles on the subject:

Does a new law in Delaware ban spanking? on CNN’s The Situation Room.

Spanking Ban in Delaware? First State to Pass Law Expanding Child Abuse Definition Sparks Debate on Yahoo’s Shine.

It looks like the bill is not intended to ban spanking, but the language is vague enough that it could be used to. I will be keeping my eye on this story.

More on Created To Be His Help Meet

Sheila Wray Gregoire discusses Debi Pearl, Wife Abuse and True Submission in Submission Doesn’t Mean Lying Over And Taking It.   The discussion in the Comments is also very interesting.  It was there that I found he following link:

Natalie at Dusty Feet has been working on a very detailed book review of Created To Be His Help Meet.

Williams Trial Postponed Until Feb 2013

According to the Skagit County Herald, the “homicide by abuse” trial for Larry and Carri Williams is now scheduled for February 4, 2013.

Black Earth Pastor Gets 2 Years in Prison in Child Abuse Case

Philip Caminiti, pastor of , has been sentenced to 2 years in jail and 6 years probation according to an article in the Wisconsin State Journal.  His lawyer, Yolanda Lehner, appears to be taken aback by the whole thing which she likens to the Spanish Inquisition.

Abuse Without Hitting

Dulce de Leche features an anonymous testimony about the damage of emotional and mental abuse in But He Never Hit Her.

Another Abusive School on CNN

Under Much Grace shares the transcripts and video of CNN’s report on Pinehaven Home for Troubled Teens in a 3 part series which starts here.

 

Pastor Found Guilty of Child Abuse

The Wisconsin State Journal reports that Philip Caminiti, the pastor of the Aleitheia Bible Church, was found guilty yesterday, Wednesday March 21, 2012.  This is very important as it will set a precedence that pastors can be held accountable for their abusive advice.

 

Christian child abuse: more works-based carnality

Churchmouse has posted an extensively researched look at Spiritual and Physical Abuse in Christian child abuse: more works-based carnality.  This is a long piece and well worth the time it will take to read it.

Trail Set to Begin for Pastor of Aleitheia Bible Church

The Wisconsin State Journal reports “Trial set to begin for pastor who allegedly instructed followers to beat their children with dowels.

A Psychology Professor Critiques the Pearls’ Teachings

Southern Methodist University (SMU) in Dallas has uploaded a video from FOX News in which “SMU Psychology Professor George Holden, who specializes in child-parent relationships and positive child rearing, talks critically about Michael and Debi Pearl’s book “To Train Up A Child,” which advocates spanking.”  More information about Professor Holden here.

Remnant Fellowship’s Abusive Teachings Exposed

Under Much Grace exposes the history of child abuse of Remnant Fellowship.

Christianity Today and the Spanking Issue

William  Webb commends Christianity Today and the stance they have taken on the Spanking Issue.

Understanding Brainwashing and How Children Are Primed for Victimization

Cindy of Under Much Grace takes informative and very technical looks at abusive behavior, analyzing both the victims and the abusers.

She has a new series about brainwashing.  I want to make special note of part 7  in which she ties the information to the Pearls’ teachings. Here is a short summary which she wrote for me:

I think of it in terms of developmental milestones and such, and most all learning is experiential for a child for the first 36 months and is primarily all on the right side of the brain, entirely self-centered and oriented toward felt sense.

Children under the age of two only make Delta waves on EEG, the same brainwave that an adult makes while they sleep. From two to six, they make only theta waves which is what an adult generates just before falling asleep, basically. The plotting that Pearl talks about is a fast brainwave that doesn’t manifest in a child until they approach age twelve.

I would also like to draw your attention to the posts after part X which are about how the mindset of many families prime children for victimization.

Now, on the the entire series:

Six Impossible Things Before Breakfast: Understanding Doctrine Over Person Part I

A Sychophant for a Sociopath Does Damage Control: Understanding Doctrine Over Person Part II

Another Example of Transformed Memory in Response to Psychological Stress and Interpersonal Pressure in a POW Camp: Understanding Doctrine Over Person, Part III

Lifton on Reaffirming the Myth and How Adults and Children Respond: Understanding Doctrine Over Person Part IV

Steven Martin on the Heresy of Mind Control in Christian Churches: Understanding Doctrine Over Person, Part V

Steven Martin on the Role of Denial in the Altering of Memory: Understanding Doctrine Over Person, Part VI

Altered States of Consciousness Resulting from Trauma and Environmental Factors and Brainwave States Associated with Childhood Growth and Development: Understanding Doctrine Over Person, Part VII

Post Traumatic Stress as a Physical Process and the Inadequacies of Some Types of Biblical Counseling: Understanding Doctrine Over Person, Part VIII

Additional Factors Contributing to Doctrine Over Person Pressures at Hephzibah House: Understanding Doctrine Over Person, Part IX of X (Summary and Review)

The Effects of Trauma and Abuse at Hephzibah House: Understanding Doctrine Over Person, Part X of X

She follows up this series with a related series about Understanding the Role of Childhood Emotional Development in Spiritual Abuse.

 

Showing Compassion To The Deceived

This blog has always tried to argue against false teachings without making those using those teachings feel condemned. That is a delicate balance and not always possible to achieve. It is not at all pleasant to find out that the choices one has prayerfully made are considered to be abuse by many people. And upon discovering that one has in fact made a terrible mistake and has fallen into an abusive lifestyle is gut wrenching. Not only does one have to come to grips with the fact that one has been deceived and spiritually abused, but one must face the fact that one has been abusing his or her own children. Often, by the time this discovery is made serious or even irreparable damage has been done to the parent/child relationship. Someone posted to my Facebook wall the following:

I just wanted to share my status update with you. Since learning the dangers of TTUAC a year ago, I have had the hardest year of my life. Right now things are getting a lot worse. I have had a response from another mother who is in the midst of the same pain right now.

TTUAC is not just abusing children. It is also abusing [Read more…]

Elizabeth Esther on Anderson

Elizabeth Esther will be appearing on Anderson Cooper’s new daytime talk show (on FOX) with Michael Pearl this Friday (Dec 2, 2011) and she writes about it here, My appearance on Anderson Cooper’s daytime talk show airs this Friday, Dec. 2nd #NoMoreDeadKids.  She includes a link to find out where and when you can watch it in your area. And here is a promo for the show.

Here is another recent post where she explains why many people follow Pearls’ teachings: Seductive promise of perfectly happy, obedient children feeds abuse.

Hana and The Pearls in The Seattle Times

Jeff Hodson of the Seattle Times provides extensive coverage of the death of Hana Alemu “Williams” as well as the Pearls’ teachings in Did Hana’s parents ‘train’ her to death?  I am grateful to see  this blog mentioned and linked to  in this article.  Letters to the editor regarding that article are here.