Former OR Youth Minister Draws Just Over 15 Years

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Donald Courtney Biggs, 40, former Medford youth pastor who secretly videotaped women and girls.

Pedophile Preacher Left in Pile on Floor
After Victim’s Dad Catches Him
in Courtroom

A convicted pedophile from Oregon is making national news after the father of one of his victims punched the youth pastor who molested his child.

Former Medford youth pastor accused of
secretly videotaping women and girls

“Three-and-a-half years’ worth of emotions stirred in Kevin Patrick Smith,” CNN reported.

“The 45-year-old said he was sitting in the Medford, Oregon, federal courthouse on Wednesday for the sentencing hearing for Donald Courtney Biggs, 40, when he rushed Biggs and punched him.

“Biggs, a former youth pastor at Mountain Christian Fellowship, had pleaded guilty in February to one count of transportation with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity with a minor, according to a news release from the US attorney’s office for Oregon.”

According to reports, the sentencing hearing was a long and testy one for the one-time youth pastor at the Medford, Oregon church.

First, victims’ statements were read, going on over two hours.  Then it came time for sealed statements in Biggs’ defense.

It was all too much for Smith.

“At that point, I just kind of snapped,” Smith told CNN.

“I charged across the courtroom.  He was sitting behind a desk.  I leaped over the desk and got a punch in on his face.”

An enraged parent getting a shot at a man who victimized a child can be a frightful sight.  Biggs was knocked to the ground, where he lay in the fetal position, according to the The Daily Wire.  He was later taken to a hospital.

“Full force, just like Superman, it looked like he flew through the air right into him and just punched him,” Jacob Elkin, a witness, told CNN.

Smith was charged with obstructing governmental or judicial administration, fourth-degree assault and second-degree disorderly conduct.  However, this being 2018, there’s already been a GoFundMe page set up for his assistance.

“Kevin smith is what I would like to call a heroic figure, a true man of justice, an outstanding man,” the page read.

“As of Sunday night, the page had raised $12,915, most of it coming in individual contributions of $125 or less,” CNN reported.  That number was up to almost $15,000 by early Tuesday afternoon.

One of the issues in the case was that even prosecutors thought justice wasn’t served.  This included Elkin, who set up the GoFundMe page and is also a relative of a victim.  He also used an image of Superman in the campaign, something with which I might begin to think DC Comics might not be terribly thrilled with.

Even though the investigation revealed multiple instances of inappropriate contact and recording devices used, Biggs was only charged with one count.

That still brought a pretty stiff sentence.

Biggs “was sentenced today to 188 months in federal prison for surreptitiously recording minor church members in various stages of undress while employed as a youth pastor at Mountain Christian Fellowship in Medford,” a statement from the United States’ Attorney’s Office District of Oregon read.

“This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse.  Led by the U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims.”

And, as it stands, Biggs is going to be spending a goodly chunk of his life behind bars. And on his way, he managed to make national news in the worst way possible.

Mothers And Meth

Meth-Addicted Mothers and Child Abuse

THE ATLANTIC SELECTS
Video by Mary Newman

In the United States, methamphetamine is making a comeback.  Following the legalization of medical marijuana in California, Mexican cartels pivoted to the production of pure liquid meth, which is brought across the border and crystallized in conversion labs.  There is more meth on the streets than ever before, according to William Ruzzamenti, a 30-year Drug Enforcement Administration veteran and the Executive Director of the Central Valley California HIDTA (High-Intensity Drug Trafficking Area).  It’s also cheaper than ever—the average cost of an ounce of methamphetamine dropped from nearly $968 in 2013 to around $250 in 2016.

“I think a lot of people associate meth with the 1990s, and this comeback has gone largely unnoticed in the shadow of the heroin and opioid epidemics,” Mary Newman, a journalist at the Investigative Reporting Program at UC Berkeley, told The Atlantic.

Newman’s short documentary, Motherhood and Meth, focuses on the drug’s frequently overlooked and arguably most vulnerable victims: children.  Although no scientific research has been conducted that directly correlates meth addiction to child abuse or neglect, many experts on the subject report a connection that Newman describes as “staggering.”  In her film, Newman interviews Dr. Philip Hyden, a child abuse specialist who has worked across the U.S. for more than 30 years.  Since 2010, Dr. Hyden has served as the medical director at the Valley Children’s Hospital in Fresno, the poorest urban ZIP code in the state.  Fresno experiences a high incidence of child abuse, and Dr. Hyden attributes one cause to the high rate of methamphetamine addiction in the region.  He estimates that meth use is involved in over 70% of the 1,000 abuse cases the clinic sees each year.

“We see children that have been beaten or abused in many scenarios where the perpetrator was on meth at the time,” Dr. Hyden says in the film.  “We see things that are hard to believe that happen to kids.”

This abuse sometimes begins during pregnancy; an estimated 19,000 meth users in the U.S. are pregnant women.  In home environments where meth is manufactured, children almost always test positive for methamphetamine—often at levels as high as addicted users, according to an expert in the film.

To get a firsthand look at the effects of methamphetamine addiction on mothers and their children, Newman’s documentary follows law enforcement officers, professionals at treatment facilities, and mothers affected by meth addiction who admit to having neglected their kids.  Newman met many of these women at Fresno’s weekly free needle exchange.  She interviewed more than twenty women—some of whom agreed to participate, only to disappear once a shoot date was scheduled—before she found the subjects featured in the film.

“Once I built up some essential trust with women willing to share their struggles of addiction, I would ask if meth ever caused them or someone in their life to become violent,” Newman said.  “Everyone responded with an emphatic ‘yes.’”  Newman added that she heard “harrowing” stories about domestic violence, child abuse, and a generational cycle of meth addiction.  Many of the addicts she spoke to were either the child of a meth addict themselves or had experienced abuse early in life.

“The power methamphetamine has on a person’s life was the most surprising part of [reporting] this story,” Newman said.  “I would speak with people struggling with addiction and they would have a certain self-awareness that their decisions were derailing their life, but they would also describe a feeling of complete helplessness.” Newman said that several people—both addicts and experts—described meth as “evil” due to the sheer power over the people that use it.

“These kids are the ultimate victims,” says a police officer in the film.  “They didn’t ask for this.”

OK Sheriff Bryant Has Heart Every Father Should Have

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A Dad is half of a Team that pulls in Tandem for the good of the Family.

Sheriff speaks out about Dickson
Child Abuse case

ARDMORE, OK  –  Carter County Sheriff Chris Bryant said an investigation into a child abuse case which began August 1 via the Dickson Police Department is still underway.

The investigation is now being conducted by the Carter County Sheriff’s Office.

“There was a two year old and a four-year-old inside the home,” Bryant said.  “The conditions inside the house were dilapidated, very bad conditions.  The house had lots of feces, animal feces, and no running water.”  Bryant said Dickson Police sent the two-year-old child to the hospital.  That child was later airlifted for medical care. The other child was treated by a local doctor, Bryant said.  The children have been placed with a foster family and their medical needs are being addressed.

“The child who was airlifted was released to a foster family,” Bryant said.  “He is mobile, moving around laughing and talking.“

Bryant said the children are the biological children of the male subject in the case. Bryant confirmed charges have been filed on both the biological father and spouse.

“This right here has been the worst we have ever seen,” Bryant said.  “It’s very disheartening, as a father myself.  It has been very difficult for everyone that has worked on this.  No child deserves this.  This is unacceptable.”  Bryant confirmed both subjects remain in custody as of Friday morning . Bond was set for the male subject in the amount of $1 million.  Bond has been reduced for the female subject to $75,000.

“This was an issue that Dickson PD had been involved with early on,” Bryant said. The family had been previously investigated by DHS as well, according to Bryant. “We want to offer assistance to any agency having these issues.  We want to make sure these things are handled correctly and taken care of swiftly.  We want to help those children who don’t have a voice for themselves.”  Bryant said more charges may be added as the investigation is still ongoing.

While investigators are looking into whether the female subject may have participated in the abuse of the children, Bryant said knowing the abuse is being perpetrated and not reporting or protecting the children is just as reprehensible. “She didn’t do much to stop it, from what we’re understanding,” Bryant said.  “You’re just as guilty if you know this is happening and don’t try to stop it.  We would encourage anyone out there who has information about any kind of abuse whatsoever going on, please call us and let us help.”

Bryant said he waited to discuss the case with the public or the media until he could be sure he could present precise information.  “We want to make sure that what we’re reporting is 100 percent factual before we discuss it,” Bryant said.  “When you have children or infants at stake here, we want to protect the integrity of the case.”

The Seldom Mentioned Side Of Opioid Addiction

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Number of Opioid-Addicted Women Giving Birth Quadruples

Number of Opioid-Addicted Women
Giving Birth Quadruples

By Dennis Thompson
HealthDay Reporter

The number of pregnant women addicted to opioids as they give birth has more than quadrupled since 1999, a disturbing new report shows.

In 2014, for every 1,000 hospital deliveries, 6.5 were mothers who arrived at the hospital with opioid use disorder, up from 1.5 per 1,000 in 1999, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention researchers found.

This increase is likely linked to America’s ongoing opioid epidemic, said study co-author Jean Ko, an epidemiologist with the CDC’s division of reproductive health.

“With the opioid overdose epidemic, it’s natural to see increases in opioid use disorder among the general population,” Ko said.  “Our data tell us that women presenting for labor and delivery are no different.

Opioid use during pregnancy has been tied to maternal death during delivery, stillbirth and preterm birth, the CDC researchers noted.

Even babies born healthy might have to go through opioid withdrawal, a condition known as neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS).

Babies with NAS can experience tremors, convulsions, seizures, difficulty feeding, breathing problems, fever, diarrhea and trouble sleeping, according to the March of Dimes.

The CDC study used data from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, focusing on 28 states with at least three years of data available for analysis.

Between 1999 and 2014, all 28 states saw significant increases in opioid-addicted pregnant women entering labor.

Vermont and West Virginia had the most cases of opioid-affected pregnancies in 2014.  Vermont had 48.6 cases for every 1,000 deliveries; West Virginia had 32.1 cases per 1,000.  On the low-end, Nebraska had 1.2 cases per 1,000 and the District of Columbia had 0.7 per 1,000.

The average annual rate increases were highest in Maine, New Mexico, Vermont and West Virginia.  Those states all had growth of more than 2.5 cases per 1,000 each year — six times higher than the national average of 0.4 cases per 1,000.

The states with the lowest increases were California and Hawaii, with fewer than 0.1 new cases per 1,000 each year.

The new information “is very alarming and is a call to arms regarding this national health crisis,” said Dr. Mitchell Kramer, chairman of obstetrics and gynecology at Huntington Hospital in Huntington, N.Y.

“We are well aware of the association of opioid exposure and abuse with adverse pregnancy outcomes including preterm labor and delivery, stillbirth, neonatal withdrawal syndrome and maternal mortality,” he said.

But Ko said concerns about babies with NAS should not dissuade pregnant women from taking medicines appropriately prescribed to treat chronic medical disorders, or from taking medications like methadone or buprenorphine that aid in addiction treatment.

The CDC recommends a number of strategies for countering this dangerous trend:

  • Making sure opioids are prescribed appropriately.
  • Strengthening state-level prescription drug monitoring programs.
  • Requiring substance abuse screening at the first prenatal visit, as recommended by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.
  • Ensuring that pregnant women with opioid use disorder have access to addiction therapy, and that new opioid-addicted mothers receive postpartum care that includes mental health and substance abuse treatment.

Kramer pointed out that “the implications of this startling CDC data are that coordinated national, state and provider efforts are necessary to prevent, monitor and treat opioid use disorder among reproductive-aged and pregnant women.”

The report was published in the Aug. 10 issue of the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

Same WA HHS-CPS Tainted Stats, Lies, Billion$$ Wasted

.jpg photo of release of new HHS report
As states begin actively watching over CPS, like Texas, the true numbers will come out.

New data: Child Abuse deaths rise,
notably in Texas, Indiana

There is not 686,000 calls taken for Child maltreatment, there are at least 3,300,000 calls annually for Child Abuse, and this is estimated to be less than a quarter of the actual instances of Child Maltreatment, which translates to at least 13,200,000 actual instances of Child maltreatment.

However, somehow CPS hacks through all the Abused Children, and comes up with just 686,000 instances of abuse, this is why all Child Abuse calls should be made to 911.  Also, “under staffed”, “case-load too high”, and “under-funded”, is stock, go-to excuses every time, yet these people’s transgressions are well documented: Making fake abuse calls on innocent people, Throwing thousands of unchecked reports in dumpsters, Deleting answering machines, Taking weeks to investigate priority cases which are supposed to be checked out within 24 hours, and a real favorite of theirs is Manufacturing Instruments(Documents) of the court…. SO THEY CAN HURT INNOCENT CHILDREN, PARENTS, AND GOOD FAMILIES!!!!

All of this is a matter of record, just as their “5 Children die a day from abuse”, the real number is at least 10 – 13, and possibly as high as 15 Children die every day from Child Maltreatment.  And finally, “UNDERFUNDED????”, at this point in time, there are several cases of CPS employees ripping off the system(the Tax payers) for 5 and 6 figures by traveling first class, among other things.
Robert StrongBow

INDIANAPOLIS, IN  –  Newly released federal figures show a sharp rise in child abuse fatalities in the U.S., with the bulk of the increase occurring in two states — Indiana and Texas — where child-welfare agencies have been in disarray.

Not one state has met all of the minimum child welfare standards even one (1) time since this system was put in place.
“Shame On U.S.” Report

According to a report released this week by the Department of Health and Human Services, there were 1,700 fatalities resulting from child maltreatment reported in fiscal year 2016, compared to 1,589 the previous year — a 7 percent increase.  The figures encompass data from every state but Maine, as well as from the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.

Accounting for most of the increase were Texas, where fatalities jumped from 162 to 217, and Indiana, where the death toll more than doubled from 34 to 70.

“It breaks my heart for the kids in this state right now,” said Juvenile Judge Marilyn A. Moores, whose Indianapolis courtroom has seen a surge in child welfare cases due to the opioid epidemic.

“Traditional systems of early warning are overwhelmed.  And parents, because of addiction, aren’t seeking intervention because their kids are going to be removed,” she added.  “It allows kids to die.  It’s a fact.”

Long festering problems in Indiana’s child welfare system exploded into public view in December, when the director of the Department of Child Services resigned with a scathing letter that accused Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb of making management changes and service cuts that “all but ensure children will die.”

“I choose to resign, rather than be complicit in decreasing the safety, permanency and well-being of children who have nowhere else to turn,” wrote Mary Beth Bonaventura, a former juvenile judge appointed to lead the agency by then-Gov. Mike Pence in 2013.

In recent years, the number of child welfare cases in Indiana has skyrocketed, rising from about 13,000 in 2012 to nearly 24,000 last year.  Funding, meanwhile, has not kept pace, said Cathy Graham, executive director of the Indiana Association of Resources and Child Advocacy.

Advocates paint a picture of an agency in perpetual triage, with caseworkers spread so thin that they have little choice but to cut corners.  The agency does not have enough caseworkers to meet a minimum requirement set in state law and turnover has been a major problem, according to the agency’s most recent annual report.

Holcomb launched a review in December.  A preliminary report released Thursday found the state has an inadequate case management system.

In Texas, abuse-related fatalities have continued to rise despite high-level personnel changes at the child welfare agency, new legislative appropriations, and a federal judge, Janis Graham Jack, declaring in 2015 that the foster care system violated the constitutional rights of youngsters’ placed in long-term foster care.

In January, the judge issued her final order in the case, saying the state’s foster care system remained “broken.”  She also ordered improvements in regards to record keeping and the handling of foster care placements.  Texas appealed the ruling.

Two years ago, a commission created by Congress concluded that the United States lacks coherent, effective strategies for reducing the number of children who die each year from abuse and neglect.  Although the number of such deaths reported by HHS has hovered at around 1,500 to 1,600 annually in recent years, the commission — citing gaps in how the data is compiled — suggested the actual number may be as high as 3,000 a year.

The commission issued an update this week noting that states across the country were moving to implement some of its recommendations for preventing maltreatment deaths.

The new report released by HHS’s Children’s Bureau, formally known as the National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System, does not offer theories explaining the sharp rise in child fatalities, but it provides demographic data on the victims.

According to the report, 70 percent of the victims were younger than 3.  Fatality rates were higher for boys than for girls, and higher for African-American children than for whites and Hispanics.

Parents — acting alone, together or with other individuals — were the perpetrators in 78 percent of the deaths.

Looking more broadly at national trends, the report estimated that 676,000 children were victims of abuse and neglect in 2016, a 1 percent drop from 2015. Most of the cases involved neglect; about 18 percent involved physical abuse — up slightly from 2015.

“When your data is flawed, every other part of your system is going to be flawed.”
Elisa Weichel, a staff attorney with the Children’s Advocacy Institute

Child Abuse And Neglect Laws Aren’t Being Enforced, Report Finds

January 27, 2015
Laws intended to protect children from abuse and neglect are not being properly enforced, and the federal government is to blame
.