Thursday, February 24, 2011

The Silent Victims by Jose Oceans

This poem was written by a student after viewing David's presentation.  This young poet is incredibly gifted.

The Silent Victims

They stand weak, if they have enough strength to stand
And from their hiding place they cry in silence
Too afraid to speak out or show their pain
Their little minds, hearts, hands and shoulders all grow tense

They pray for forgiveness
Not knowing what they’ve done
Hoping to be delivered from the bad in their lives
Wanting to be saved from this hell, before they’re gone

A poison that fills up their lungs
Leaving them for dead
Their final cure, they hope
That this is the very end

But wake and open your eyes small one
You have not done a thing
The fault of this is not your own
Dry your tears and stop your crying

Be strong and live!
Stop praying for forgiveness
You have not come to sin
But are innocent and faultless

Breathe in hope and see that faith
You are not abandoned, left to be alone
We are here just, grab our hand
Listen to the sincerity in our voice’s tone

A devil, a demon has possessed the lives of those around
A snake with forked tongues slithers through your house
And laid to waste, that snake will die!
You story courage, it will arouse

You may not know me
But I still love you
Your life is precious
And don’t listen to those that say it’s not true

For those who have ears that hide a secret
Speak, speak again and utter what your eyes have seen
Don’t hold your breath or bite your lips
Don’t let the horror that is caused remain in vain

Those with strength protect the weaker
Don’t let them die without a battle
Though too small to hold thy sword
Lift your gavel, justify, punish hard, let the walls of court all rattle

Out of fear of a greater hell
They hold tight their lips, and hide away in their limbs
The cry and pray in silence
Because they are the Silent Victims

By Jose Oceans

Monday, February 21, 2011

Johna Osborn - Burned in Parents Meth Lab

Johna Osborn was 14 months old in August 2009 when she was burned over 40% of her body in a fire caused by her parent's meth lab.

Johna was playing her her playpen while her infant brother lay in a baby swing.  Nearby her father was attempting to manufacture methamphetamine when the process caused an explosion.  Johna was trapped in her playpen when it erupted in flames.  She was burnt over 40% of her body before her father flipped her out of the playpen.  Her brother was not injured.

Her father, John Osborn, states he instructed her mother to call 911.  He then ran away leaving his critically injured daughter because he said he feared arrest.  He was later arrested when seeking treatment for his own burns.

Johna's mother, Tessa Wagy, lied and told medical workers that Johna was burnt in a grease fire.  It was only after the baby's burns did not respond to the proper treatment and some had deteriorated from 2nd to 3rd degree did doctors discover the true nature of her injuries.

I can not imagine any parent letting their child suffer in such a way while not opening their mouths so their child could be treated properly.  However, it has happened more than once.  In TN a child swallowed chemicals and her parents listened to her screams for an hour and kept telling doctors they "didn't know" what she had gotten into.  In another case a 6 month old baby was found with 3rd degree chemical burns  - his grandmother feared the discovery of her meth lab so she did not take him to the doctor.

Johna, now over a year later, is receiving speech and physical therapy for her injuries.  Her grandmother, who has custody now, said doctors are worried she may not have full use of her arm.

To make matters worse in this situation Johna was not even supposed to be with her parents.  Her aunt,  Wendy Adkison, was her appointed guardian.   According to the rules set forth in the guardianship agreement the aunt was supposed to contact the department of family services if either parent even tried to contact Johna.  Instead, she gave Johna to them.

John Osborn was sentenced to 60 years in prison.  He denied ever attempting to manufacture meth.

Tessa Wagy was sentenced to 50 years.  She admitted to buying the pseudoephedrine.

Wendy Adkison received supervised probation.  No jail time.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Baby found with 2nd-3rd degree burns in mom's, grandma's meth lab

Hoke County, NC – It’s always nice to get your children into the family business at an early age but maybe a legal business would be a better idea!
23 year old Ashley Milligain of Summerville, SC went to North Carolina on Monday to get her 4 month old baby boy but ended up being arrested and charged with felony child abuse, manufacture of methamphetamine and felony obstruction of justice. During a raid on Thursday, police found the baby with second and third degree burns caused by chemicals. The child had not been taken for medical treatment probably for fear of alerting the authorities of their meth lab.
6 other people were arrested on Thursday including the boy’s paternal grandmother, Michelle Lynn Tiller, 42. She was also charged with child abuse.
Sheriff Peterkin says Milligan had a hand in running the operation.
"We found that she was not only there doing some of the cooking, she was involved in the cooking and dealing with the some of the cooking, she was very much aware of the surroundings she was leaving the child in when she brought and left the child here," he said.
The child is being treated at Cape Fear Valley Medical Center. Hospital officials aren't releasing the child's condition, but the sheriff says the little boy is doing okay despite developing some medical complications believed to be caused by his exposure to toxic fumes.
Bond was set for Milligan Monday at $125,000.


This 4 month old baby was left suffering with severe burns by his own grandmother to avoid exposing her illegal activity.  I can't even imagine the pain this child was in.  Another story said it was the baby's screams that led authorities to his discovery.  Sick.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

New Criminal Analyst in Elkhart Co. Will Focus Just On Meth

GOSHEN — Methamphetamine pushers in Elkhart County should now have a new reason to worry with the announcement that a dedicated criminal analyst will soon be hired by the Elkhart County Prosecutor’s Office.

The announcement was made during a meeting of the Elkhart County Council Saturday, where Ed Windbigler, new chief investigator with the Elkhart County Prosecutor’s Office, informed the board that his office has received a hefty $250,000 Total Cops Methamphetamine Grant.

Windbigler recently took over as chief investigator for the prosecutor’s office after spending nearly 24 years with the Elkhart Police Department. He is replacing Bill Wargo, who has retired after 33 years in law enforcement.

During his presentation, Windbigler indicated that the grant will allow his office to hire a new Criminal Intelligence Analyst, whose sole job will be to compile and analyze data from agencies throughout Elkhart County. Such data will then be used to predict which areas pose the highest risk for methamphetamine-related crimes, as well as where such activity is most likely to spread.

According to INTERPOL, the world’s largest international police organization, the central task of a criminal intelligence analyst is to help officials — law enforcers, policy makers, and decision makers — deal more effectively with uncertainty, to provide timely warning of threats, and to support operational activity by analyzing crime.

“This is something that I think we need to do to make law enforcement better in Elkhart County,” said Windbigler.

With receipt of the grant, the prosecutor’s office will be able to fully fund the new analyst position through 2012 with the chance to extend the position further if funding allows.

Such funding will include everything necessary for the job, including salary, training, technology, software and travel.

Councilman David Foutz, a teacher and economist with a flare for numbers, was particularly excited about the potential for the new position.

“I’m a numbers guy,” Foutz said, “so I think this is just great.”

Windbigler said that with the grant now secured, his office has already begun the process of interviewing potential applicants for the position.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Letter to Lawmakers re: Pseudoephedrine Becoming Prescription Only

This is a letter I drafted to send to my state representative concerning passing a law that would return pseudoephedrine to prescription only status:

I learned a few days ago that a bill has been introduced to make pseudoephedrine available only with a prescription.  Which, in fact, would only be returning pseudoephedrine to prescription only status as it was until 1976.   I wanted to let you know that my husband, David, and myself support this measure 100%.  There has been much discussion about this in other states and many myths being spread.  I’d like to address some of these.

Myth 1 – Meth cooks will find another chemical in place of pseudoephedrine to manufacture meth.
Fact - There are only two chemicals that meth can not be made without - pseudoephedrine (PSE) and phenyl-2-propanone (commonly called P2P).   P2P has already been banned in the United States, but is still used in Mexico. The small labs that are in hotels, houses, and children's bedrooms use PSE. There is no other ingredient required to manufacture methamphetamine readily available in the United States except PSE.  All the other ingredients like anhydrous and drain cleaner are used in the manufacturing process and aren’t really ingredients.  There are substitutes for those chemicals.

Myth 2 – Online tracking systems are effective and help law enforcement arrest meth cooks.
Fact - Tracking laws are not working. KY and OK have the meth check program and they have also been hit with record years for labs.  I understand the view from some law enforcement, but in my opinion, they are working toward the wrong goal.  The goal should not be to track and watch purchases, than arrest as many people as possible, using as much manpower and tax dollars possible while filling up jails. The goal should be to eliminate labs in the first place. Besides, by the time they track, watch, and arrest a meth cook, that cook has already taught an average of ten other people how to manufacture methamphetamine, children have been poisoned or killed, and homes have been contaminated.

Some opponents of this measure state that the tracking system works because there is evidence of some blocked transactions.   What they neglect to mention is that much of the PSE used in the manufacture of meth is obtained through "smurfing".  Most people know when they have reached their limit and simply recruit someone else to make the purchase for them.

Myth 3 - There is no proof that passing this law would have any effect on the number of labs.
Fact - Oregon's meth labs numbered in the hundreds before they made it prescription only. Last year they had about 10 labs. Mississippi’s labs dropped by 65% after enacting the law.  The Rx only law works. 

Myth 4 – Making PSE prescription only will raise the cost of the medication.
Fact – Not true.  I have checked this myself by calling pharmacies in Oregon.

Myth 5 – Law abiding citizens will have to pay for a doctor’s visit and miss work every time they have a cold and be out hundreds of dollars.
Fact – While we will have to pay to see a doctor once, refills can be given or called in at the doctor’s discretion.

Another argument against passing this is that it won’t do anything to cut down on drug use.  I am not sure about that.  Drug users may begin importing more meth or switch to another drug.  Passing this law is not about that though.  It is about keeping another child from ingesting or being burnt by meth making chemicals, or dying in a fire/explosion caused by manufacturing meth, or being made sick by being exposed to those chemicals.

I am a sinus sufferer without insurance.  I know it will be a slight inconvenience.   However, I believe that little bit of inconvenience to me is worth saving the life of a child.  

I’d like to urge you to vote “Yes” on this measure when the opportunity arises.


Amy Parnell