Source: NEW ERA
I am at a loss for words. I can never understand how it can be so easy for me to see, for it is right there, in front of you, in your face.
OH, if I were only a Knight, a Paladin, This man would be my Bard…. WHAT’S THAT???? OH NO, My Friend, for I already have My Merlin, whose words can be your worst nightmare, or the Bar Maid, or so you think; when this Bard sings or expounds his poetry, they will make a movie one day of 3, not 300.
I fail to see how the love of one’s own self can overshadow the reality of what is happening to so many, and the one’s that suffer the most are the Elders and the Children.
In a year when violent and criminal off-the-field behavior by athletes has appeared prominently in the news, Major League Baseball has, for the first time, announced a comprehensive policy regarding players involved in domestic violence, sexual assault and child abuse cases. The policy was announced jointly with and in agreement with the players union.
The terms of the policy, in their entirety, follow. In short, however, the policy has a dual treatment and intervention program along with a disciplinary program.
The treatment and intervention part will include the creation of a Joint Policy Board which will be responsible for evaluating a player and supervising the treatment of a player if treatment is deemed appropriate. If the player does not adhere to a treatment program, he will be subject to discipline.
Discipline will not carry a minimum or maximum penalty, but rather the Commissioner can issue the discipline “he believes is appropriate in light of the severity of the conduct.” Discipline will not be contingent on whether the player pleads guilty or is found guilty of a crime. A player can appeal discipline to an arbitration panel. A team cannot discipline a player unless the Commissioner delegates that power to the team.
One small but potentially important part of this is that past discipline, or the lack thereof, for domestic violence cannot be used as a basis of appeal. Likely because there has been no past discipline in any real sense. As such, if Rob Manfred were to hand down a 100 game suspension or something for a first offense under this policy, the basis of the appeal can’t be “well, Milton Bradley didn’t get 100 games.” That should allow Manfred to set a strict discipline regime from the get-go now without worrying about being overturned.
Here is the full policy:
A. Treatment and Intervention
- The parties have established a Joint Policy Board, comprised of three experts in the field of domestic violence, sexual assault and/or child abuse, and two representatives each from the Players Association and the Commissioner’s Office. The Joint Policy Board is responsible for evaluating, and where appropriate, supervising the treatment of a player.
- An expert member of the Joint Policy Board will submit his or her proposed Treatment Plan to the full Board for approval. The expert who prescribed the Treatment Plan will be responsible for overseeing the player’s compliance with the Plan.
- A player’s Treatment Plan may require him to submit to psychological evaluations, attend counseling sessions, comply with court orders (including child support orders), relocate from a home shared with his partner, limit his interactions with his partner, relinquish all weapons, and other reasonable directives designed to promote the safety of the player’s partner, children, or victims.
- The Joint Policy Board will refer persons affected by domestic violence to appropriate intervention services.
- A player who fails to comply with a Treatment Plan may be subject to discipline by the Commissioner.
- All information relating to a player’s involvement with the Joint Policy Board shall be kept confidential.
- The Commissioner’s Office will investigate all allegations of domestic violence, sexual assault, and child abuse in the Baseball community. Consistent with the parties’ collective bargaining agreement, the player and the Players Association shall cooperate in the investigation, including making the player available for an interview.
- The Commissioner may place a player accused of domestic violence, sexual assault or child abuse on paid Administrative Leave for up to seven days while the allegations are investigated before making a disciplinary decision. The agreement contains procedures for a player to immediately challenge that placement before the Arbitration Panel (below).
- The Commissioner shall have authority to discipline a player who commits an act of domestic violence, sexual assault or child abuse for just cause. There is no minimum or maximum penalty prescribed under the policy, but rather the Commissioner can issue the discipline he believes is appropriate in light of the severity of the conduct. The Commissioner’s authority to discipline is not dependent on whether the player is convicted or pleads guilty to a crime.
- A player may challenge his discipline before the parties’ Arbitration Panel, which consists of a representative of each party and the parties’ agreed-upon Impartial Arbitrator. A challenge to discipline will be governed by the “just cause” standard. The Panel may consider evidence of both aggravating and mitigating factors concerning the Player’s alleged actions when relevant and appropriate.
- The Commissioner may elect to discipline a player immediately after the conclusion of the player’s Administrative Leave, reinstate the Player and defer his disciplinary decision to until after resolution of any criminal charges, or under certain circumstances may suspend the player with pay until legal proceedings are completed (at which point the paid suspension may be converted to an unpaid suspension).
- All disciplinary suspensions under the policy that are upheld are without pay and suspended players will not accrue Major League service.
- A Club may not discipline a player for a violation of the Policy unless the Commissioner defers his disciplinary authority to the Club. Any such Club discipline may also be challenged through the arbitration process.
- Under the new policy, the parties have agreed that prior precedent and past practice of disciplining players for engaging in an act of domestic violence, sexual assault or child abuse may not be relied upon by a player to support a challenge to the severity of his discipline, but that all other disciplinary past practice and precedent will remain relevant.
D. Training, Education and Resources
- All players will be provided education in English and Spanish about domestic violence, sexual assault and child abuse at regular intervals. (All Major League players participated in education sessions during Spring Training of 2015, and Minor League players at all levels have received training organized by their respective Clubs throughout the season).
- A confidential 24-hour helpline (in English and Spanish) staffed by a team of experts in domestic violence has been established for players and their families, and we have identified highly-qualified resources in every Major League market who can provide on-the-ground support and resources to those affected by domestic violence.
- The parties shall regularly provide resources to players’ families, including referral information, websites, hotline numbers and outreach facilities.
- The parties will develop an annual program of community outreach which may include public service announcements featuring players, domestic violence awareness days at ballparks and other activities designed to spread awareness on the issues. Many Clubs already partner with anti-domestic violence organizations in this area, and many Players and their families already actively support domestic anti-domestic violence organizations in their communities.
“Empowerment today meant them being able to walk and laugh and talk and smile on their way to school this morning,”
That’s the mission behind Bikers Against Child Abuse, or BACA, and the reason the Kanawha Valley chapter of roughly 10 motorcyclist is walking child abuse victims to school this week.
“To see them smile, to see them hold their head up, their chin up and look you in the eye because maybe they couldn’t do that before with others because they were afraid – it’s a blessing for us,” said BACA patch member “Bootsie.”
BACA members said thousands of children in West Virginia are abused physically and/or sexually. Some of those children are too scared to walk to class in fear the perpetrators will find and hurt them again, BACA members said.
Friday marked the second day the Kanawha Valley chapter walked two child abuse victims to Cabell County schools. 13 News is not releasing the names of those children or schools in order to protect their identities.
BACA also escorts children to court in child abuse cases. “Pipe,” president of the BACA Kanawha Valley chapter, said they will also go to parks with children or sleep on their front porches if they’re too scared to sleep at night – anything that helps the children feel safe.
“Empowerment today meant them being able to walk and laugh and talk and smile on their way to school this morning,” Bootsie said. “They’re the hero – they’re the strong one. We’re just the supporter.”
Each motorcyclist must go through a background check before becoming a part of BACA. Anyone who’d like to join the organization can find out more information at their monthly meetings, held on the second Sunday of each month at 2 p.m. at the Eleanor Fire Department.
BACA can be reached on their hotline at 304-760-9373 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.orgC
Man Gets 6 To 10 Years For Chaining Boy To Porch, Putting Dead Chicken Around His Neck
MONROE, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina man has been sentenced to six to 10 years in prison after admitting he handcuffed an 11-year-old boy by his ankle to a porch with a dead chicken around his neck as punishment.
Dorian Harper was sentenced Wednesday after pleading guilty to child abuse, assault with a deadly weapon and maiming without malice.
Harper told the judge in Monroe southeast of Charlotte that he is sorry for his actions.
Prosecutors said they agreed to accept a guilty plea to spare the children in the home from having to testify at a trial.
Prosecutors said the children had endured enough, living in a filthy house with animals, being hungry and beaten.
THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP’s earlier story is below.
A North Carolina man pleaded guilty Wednesday to handcuffing an 11-year-old boy by his ankle to a porch with a dead chicken around his neck as punishment.
Dorian Harper entered the plea to three felonies, including child abuse, assault with a deadly weapon and maiming without malice. His plea came a day after a jury was seated in the case.
“Yes, sir,” Harper, 58, said when the trial judge asked if he was guilty.
Opening statements had been set for Wednesday. It wasn’t clear when Harper would be sentenced.
Harper rejected prosecutors’ plea deal Monday, saying he wanted the trial to go on. He and his girlfriend, 58-year-old Wanda Larson, were arrested after a sheriff’s deputy found the boy in November 2013.
“This is a very serious case, with very serious implications for Mr. Harper,” Judge Brad Long told the jury Tuesday.
Larson was the boy’s guardian and a Department of Social Services supervisor in Union County. Larson faces similar charges. She has pleaded not guilty.
Authorities said they think Harper tied the dead chicken around the boy’s neck as punishment for killing one of the chickens on the 5-acre farm where they lived.
The indictment against the couple said the boy had been subject to abuse that also included being chained to a piece of railroad track in his room. Harper cut the boy’s face with a knife and used an electric wire to burn his face, according to the indictment. It also said the boy once broke his wrist trying to escape.
Four other children – ages 7 to 14, all adopted by Larson – were removed from the home after Harper and Larson were arrested.
GADSDEN, Ala. (AP) — An Alabama woman charged with capital murder in the death of her granddaughter forced the girl to run for more than three hours carrying sticks and firewood as a punishment for lying, prosecutors said Monday.
Joyce Garrard is accused of forcing 9-year-old Savannah Hardin to run until she died as punishment for a lie about eating candy on the school bus. She could be sentenced either to death or life without parole if convicted.
Assistant district attorney Marcus Reid said during opening statements in a standing-room-only courtroom that jurors would hear from neighbors who say they heard and saw what happened to Savannah the day she died.
Defense attorney Dani Bone tried to raise doubt about medical evidence in the case by showing jurors a version of the indictment, which mentioned severe dehydration and seizures. However, Bone said Savannah died because of a fatally low sodium level. He said the evidence will show the girl had too much water in her system, not that she was dehydrated.
Bone told jurors that prosecutors “have oversold their case to the world.”
“They’re trying to hoodwink you with junk science,” he said. “Make them prove their case.”
According to prosecutors, neighbors said Garrard yelled at the girl as she ran, forcing her to continue “like some kind of drill sergeant.”
A neighbor, Chad Jacobs, said he saw the girl running and carrying firewood and sticks over a two-hour period as he came and went from his home.
“Joyce and Savannah were in the yard, and Joyce was telling Savannah to keep running,” said Chad Jacobs. “She was just saying, ‘Keep running, I didn’t tell you to stop.'”
Jacobs said he wasn’t concerned at first but eventually saw the girl “on all fours” on the ground and vomiting with Garrard pouring water over her. Paramedics arrived within minutes, he said.
When paramedics arrived, they found Savannah on the ground, “freezing cold to the touch,” her clothes and shoes soaking wet, Reid said. Garrard never told the medics that the girl had been running; she said only that the girl collapsed in the yard.
Savannah wasn’t supposed to eat candy because she was on medication for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and had a bladder problem, but she had eaten candy on the school bus the day before she died.
Garrard was angry that Savannah ate the candy — “but she was more upset about the lie,” Reid said.
Surveillance video from a school bus shown to a jury showed Garrard talking with the bus driver, Raenna Holmes, about Savannah taking candy without paying from another student who was selling it. Garrard told Holmes: “She’s going to run until I tell her to stop.”
The women then talk about a bladder condition the girl had and a procedure she had related to that condition. The driver then asks, “Is she OK?”
Garrard replies: “She might be when I get about four more bottles of water in her.”
Holmes said in court that she saw the girl picking up sticks in the yard but did not see her running.
“I feel partly responsible. I should have paid for those candy bars,” Holmes said.
The girl’s stepmother, Jessica Mae Hardin, is awaiting trial on a murder charge in the girl’s death. Authorities said she failed to intervene while the older woman forced the girl to run.