Sunday, May 20, 2012

What can you do to help?

This is one if the most difficult things that I have to write. Nothing to do with technology, software, process or products. Far, far more important. This is about a 13 year old girl who is in danger and being abandoned and endangered by the very systems that are in place to help her.

Everything here is my understanding and opinion. The facts come from the girls aunt, a friend of mine. I've not yet met this girl, but I know my friend and her family. I trust my friend and have confidence in the accuracy of the details she has shared. I am going to share them here, with the blessings and support of my friend and her sister, the girls mom.

I will refer to the girl as "B". Her mom is "D" and my friend is "P". B is 13. Her folks divorced almost a decade ago. Her dad, "S", has remarried. B has an older brother. I am told that B is popular in school, maintains good grades, is a very attractive girl, and is a cheerleader. B is required by the divorce documents to split her time 50/50 with her mom and dad.

She has stated that she does not want to spend any time with her father. All indications from this perspective is that B is regularly abused by her father, S. this abuse is most definitely psychological and physical. It may also be sexual.

The family lives in Florida. S's new wife is significantly more wealthy than D. S's new wife has even told B that she has given over $100K to S in legal help to fight D. The upshot is that D has been lambasted and pummeled in court. I don't have the highest degree of confidence in D's legal counsel, though P has said he's considered the best in the area, whatever that means. In any case, although B complains that she has her period every day that she is with S, although B had been whipped with a leather belt that left a wicked mark for over a day, although the school refuses unsupervised access to S, although B states that S and his wife confiscate her cell phone whenever she is with them and they scream at her all the time and restrict her contact with friends and mom and impose severe, punitive punishments for minor infractions, no one seems to be able to protect B and keep her away from S.

It seems that Judge H, who has been involved in this case for a while did a complete 180 not too long ago. He had issued orders that prevented S from having any contact with B. It seems that based upon a highly irregular psychological report, Judge H reversed himself and gave S full control over B 50% of the time.

And B is suffering. Inexplicably, neither the Department of Protective Services nor a crisis center were effective in protecting B when she came to school branded with the huge welt from S's belt and buckle. B is in danger. She needs help. She needs someone or some group to dig into the specifics of her case. She needs to be kept away from S.

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