Thursday, October 29, 2009

The Sentences

I was nervous and asked if it was inapporpriate to vomit in front of the Judge. I declined to speak in their Mother's sentencing b/c I felt I had said enough. I had spoken to the Probation Investigator and both the prosecuting and defense attorneys to explain our view that she was a victim but had many chances to tell someone. She needed some prison time and we had already worked out her deal. The Judge decided to uphold her plea bargain and she received 20 but has to serve 10.

He was a different story b/c he decided to go to trial and was proven guilty on most charges. He continued to be his arogant self and explained he was innocent. He refused to accept any responsibility for his actions and wanted to retrial it right there by presenting new evidence. At one point, he said he hoped the real guilty person would go to jail. Moron. The defense attorney only wanted to merge a few of the charges to have their sentence run concurrent and to reitterate he stated he was innocent of all charges. The A.D.A. called me up to speak and I read the following with my hands shaking so hard the words were blurry at times. I managed not to cry but it wasn't for lack of emotion.

I want you to imagine having a parent that did the things this man is guilty of. Most people have parents that tuck them into bed at night but he would wake the children from their beds and bring them to his room to satisfy his sexual needs, making nights extremely terrifying for them. He had all the power in the world over our children. He was more powerful than police, DFCS, the school, and even the courts b/c they kept sending them back to him over and over, 5 times. They couldn't trust they were free from him. They were frightened of him for all the things he did and still loved him b/c he was their father. A role he never earned but was awarded. He dominated them and their mother. They view her as another victim in their home. She couldn't save them b/c she was just like them. Three years after coming into
our home they still do not trust that we are different.

Cyr feels her body is damaged beyond repair. She carries a huge burden of guilt b/c she reinacted the same acts he was proven guilty of doing on our children. She is angry. She lost much of her childhood trying to protect her siblings. She wants him to pay for what he done and taken from them. She feels forever is too short.

Patches is so traumatized she has had to be hospitalized in a psychiatric facility. We have been told numerous times to look for a long term placement in a residential treatment facility b/c she struggles so hard to remain our a family. We will continue to fight her b/c she deserves some normalcy after what she endured.

Ruthie wets herself regularly both day and night. She is terrified she will be stolen by them. We have had to go to great lengths to prove she is safe at school b/c of this fear. She is confused b/c she misses them so much but hates what they did to her. She is desperate to stop thinking about all of this.

Michael has been hospitalized b/c he is filled with so much anger he hurts others. After seeing his father here in court, he had to be hospitalized again. His stress caused him to become more aggressive than normal for him
and feared he would hurt me or himself. He sleeps by the side of my bed b/c night time is too scary for him. He thinks about what happened and can't sleep without medication. He has nightmares and cries in his sleep.

Ella, too, sleeps in my room. She talks constantly about what happened and tries to understand why. She wets nightly and cries in her sleep. She and Ruthie are embarrassed and confused by their physical reaction to the abuse. They are dealing with a great deal of shame.

Ava's way of coping is to ignore it all. She has only been able to talk about it a couple of times briefly.

We have made many attempts to find ways to help them feel safe. We have spent 3 years in therapy, read every book we could get our hands on, attended conferences, sought out support groups, and asked many professionals for ways to help them. It boils down to this, they are forever changed by these events. We can help them cope but we can never take these events back. This will impact their future, their spouses, other children they have contact with, and their own children. Virtually, every relationship they have and will have will be affected by their inability to trust b/c of these horrific events and that it was further damaging b/c he was their parent. Nothing has had the impact that their imprisonment has made. They were able to focus on themselves instead of their fear.

The elementary school our children attend had to change their policy to protect them from taking the innocence from another child b/c of their poor boundaries with others. They can't spend the night out, have friends over for an afternoon, dress out in PE, play hide and seek, hang out in their room on the phone, or share a blanket while they watch a movie. We have to closely supervise them, keep door alarms on their doors, have video cameras in their Playroom, and have strict rules regarding undressing for showers. Normal, every day things they have to miss out on b/c they can't be safe or don't feel safe. They take daily medications to help them control their anger, fear, anxiety, depression, and sleep. Their lives are controlled by these emotions and his abuse. They deserve to know he can never get to them again. They deserve to see that his consequence was as severe as their's. He deserves to serve the same life sentence he gave them. He deserves to spend the rest of his life behind bars.

I went back to my seat and waited for the sentence while the A.D.A. explained that other cases have brought about 60-80 years and she felt at least that much would be appropriate. Then the Judge began some legal mumbo jumbo that was very confusing for the rest of us in the courtroom. He announced a Life sentence for the Agg. Sexual Battery. Seems easy enough, right? Then he started saying something about 40 yrs and 60 yrs, and then something about 20 yrs. A minimum time served of 40 yrs and on and on. I had it explained to me 3 different ways before I understood and the tears started rolling. He will never get out. He received a Life sentence with 40 yrs minimum before being considered for parole plus 60 yrs for the CM charges that will be consecutively run plus 20 yrs probation. Still confused? I was. I thought he would get out in 40 yrs. Probably not. He is eligible for parole but then he has these nasty 60 yrs to serve! They said that will muddy the waters and he should never see the light of day w/o his little jumpsuit.

I want to kiss that Judge! He did exactly what needed to be done. He made up for all the other court rulings regarding my children and their safety. These amazing people involved in the entire case saved my children when all others had walked away. This took years of dedication and I am sure they took this home. I am sure they spent nights thinking about how to pull this off, putting aside their own families for my chidlren. We will all forever be thankful for hard work. My children will be safe and more importantly than that, they will feel safe. From the bottom of my heart, thank you Rosemary, Det. Johnson, Det. Bedford, Judge Howell, and last but not least, Jenny.

24 comments:

Melissa said...

Wonderful, wonderful news!! He deserves all of that and more....

motherissues said...

I'm so glad to hear this! It's exactly what he deserved, but it's what your kids deserve too to give them the safety and security they'll need to heal. Congratulations and all good luck to you and them!

Lindsay said...

Your victim impact statement made me weep. Once again I am left wishing I had a magic wand to wave over all your children so that their lives do not forever have to be marked by what happened.

I am so glad for you all that the sentences were what you hoped for. I imagine your children will be both relieved and upset by the outcome. I wish them well in the future. I hope they can continue to heal.

atlasien said...

Thank goodness this is finally over and he will never hurt another child again.

Lisa said...

Huge relief! You did fabulous! Very articulate!

Jenny said...

Your statement was so beautifully written, It speaks of he damage done to them, but also of your enduring love and hope for them. I'm glad he got what he did. But I'm even happier that they have you.

MyLinda said...

I'm in tears...he got what he deserved! I'm so glad that you were able to be the voice for your children and hopefully this will help in the healing.

Kelly said...

So glad this part is over for you and your children. You are an amazing mother and advocate for your children.

Innocent Observer said...

I'm crying. Again. At least this time I'm home at my desk! :P

What moves me the most is that these kids found you. Before you, and without you there wasn't a single person willing to step up and keep them safe. You listened, you believed, and you took action to make sure not only that your beloved babies are safe forever, but that this monster will never harm another child.

Thank you, from the bottom of my heart for being such a hero to your kids. I love you!

FosterAbba said...

I have only two words for you: well done.

marythemom said...

Dang, I read this at work and now I'm weeping. Thank God he is behind bars and the children are safe. You did an amazing job in court, and will continue to do an amazing job parenting your children.

Thank you,
Mary in TX

Jodi said...

I'm so thankful that all of this is finally over for you and your family. Their "father" will get what he deserves for betraying his children's trust again and again.

Lorie said...

BRAVO SUPER MOM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Wow...that's really all I can say right now!

leel said...

I'm so happy for you - what a brave and valliant battle you have ALL won. I hope the children are able to relax and heal, and get to be children again. I know the damage is done, but having the worst part over is something...

hugs to you all - what brave fighters you have there!!!

Jenn said...

Good job, Mom.

Jeri said...

The phrase that just popped into my head was,"Finally, welcome home Tudu's family, welcome home." You have "made over" their home to be a place of safety and love. God bless you all.

MomInTheTrench said...

I am so happy for you and the kids.

Book Lover said...

Well I must say justice has been served!! You did a fantastic job describing your children's lives. I hope this brings a level of comfort and closure to your precious children. Hopefully they will feel more safe. Still saying prayers for you and your family.

Blessings
Kim Chrisman

Torina said...

I'm glad that you can start to put this behind you. And YES for that dirty man getting locked up forever. What goes around comes around...

Mama Drama Times Two said...

Finally. Justice is served. You were very eloquent. Wishing you all peace and healing.

ZoeSwiss said...

Well done Tudu!!!!! You are an amazing woman with an amazing family, and you all deserve this great result.

Michelle said...

Just one question...how did he react to your letter? How did he react to his sentencing?


Congratulations, Rachel and Family. Let the healing continue:)

Tudu said...

I was so nervous that I didn't look up while I was reading. I will ask their Aunt M to come here and post what she saw.

FosteringDreams said...

I'm so happy (in a sad way) to see that the resolution is complete and will help your children to feel safer.