OR - After a lifetime of abuse, a girl sees justice done/helps others

Discussion in 'Crimes-Spotlight on Children' started by Missizzy, Jan 9, 2010.

  1. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

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    http://www.oregonlive.com/news/index.ssf/2010/01/headline_tk.html

    The Oregonian should be commended for running this piece on the heart-wrenching overview of the life of a survivor. It is a series and I will add to it everyday. The only thing I have to say, other than "Wow...what a strong young woman" is that I wonder about the decision not to run her real name. "Ashley" asked that her real name be used. The abusers and rapists are named. Whom are they protecting? I'd like to hear from other survivors. If you told your story, would you want your name used?




    "From her earliest memories, nearly every adult entrusted to protect Ashley had failed her, including both parents and her stepfather. That was about to change.

    During the next five months, strangers would rescue Ashley, moved by her determination to find justice. The deputy district attorney who prosecuted Palmer became so inspired by Ashley that she formed a foundation to fund special moments in the lives of abused children.

    Ashley wants to help others, too. She hopes telling her story will let desperate children know they are not alone and show them the way to a better life."
     
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  3. believe09

    believe09 Active Member

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    This defys words.
     
  4. Texas Mist

    Texas Mist Retired WS Staff

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    MissIzzy - it sounds like 'Ashley' is still a minor & the Oregonian doesn't walk to slide down any legal slippery slopes...........And yes, she *is* a very brave girl for coming forward to give others hope....I wish there was some way to let her know that!
     
  5. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

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    You're probably right. I hadn't thought of that. I made the assumption that she was at least 18. I imagine that there'll be an outpouring of support as Portland is a strong supporter of victim/survivor rights.

    This article does come at an interesting time, though, doesn't it--right on the heels of the horrible murder of Jeanette Maples? I hope it wasn't run because of pressure from DHS for some spin.

    One point that really jumped out at me was the difficulty to reach out to a child who was constantly moving. I've never been able to figure out if frequent moves are just a natural occurrence for many dysfunctional families or if abusers and neglectful families use the moves as a way to cover up their actions.

    Totally O/T, we had an earthquake a couple of hours ago. Everyone thought I was nuts but I see that we DID. I made a note of the time and I was right on. It was odd as I thought there'd been an accident nearby, as there was a kind of lurch, and all my dogs barked. That's really rare for Oregon. Hope any posters in far Northern California and coastal Oregon are OK.
     
  6. Texas Mist

    Texas Mist Retired WS Staff

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    BBM --

    Or a combination of both? Here's another sad case of horrific abuse that I stumbled across tonite (while researching a different case).

    http://articles.latimes.com/2009/apr/18/local/me-abuse18

    & the dad moved the family (including the children born of incest abuse) to Las Vegas because he was afraid of being caught.

    I read about these cases & the meaning of 'survivor' is truly that -- they are lucky to get out alive.
     
  7. believe09

    believe09 Active Member

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    What made me speechless was the way he courted her. How confused will that make her when it comes to trying to establish normal relationships and boundaries in her life? She has a very, very strong sense of self.
     
  8. Roselvr

    Roselvr Ask me how to get your loved one in NamUs

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    To the right of the story it says -
    IMO, since she is a minor; they will not name her because it may bite them later on.

    As far as the story; and the 2nd one posted.. there can never be enough justice; the punishment does not fit the crime.

    My only hope is these 2 guys will get raped in prison.
     
  9. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

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    Texas Mist--Thanks for posting that...there are many similarities. The terror these young women (and sometimes, men) endure is just breathtaking. It's remarkable that they do live, that their bodies don't just crumple under the incredible stress. I would liken it to being in a war zone. And to think that she could carry three babies.

    I'm reminded so much of Jaycee and Elizabeth Fritzl. They somehow create a life for their children and infuse them with love and goodness. It's almost as if they strive to be the antithesis of their fathers/abductors. I wonder if anyone has ever written a book or paper on the emotional health of children raised by mothers who were raped, impregnated, and imprisoned. I greatly respect the LA woman's comment about wanting to give her daughters the things she didn't have...safety and fun. But is that possible? Do these families qualify for and receive community based therapy and parenting support? I would hope so.
     
  10. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

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    Forgot to mention that it looks as if the next segment of the Oregonian article runs tomorrow, Monday. I'll be sure to post a link.
     
  11. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

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    Speaking of using a victim/survivor's real name, we receive a newsletter from our local Children's Advocacy Center as we are supporters and got one in the mail yesterday. I was very surprised that they show teen girls in art therapy classes and at special dinners. They clearly showed their faces and used their first names. I'm certain that the girls and the families gave permission but I don't think we would have seen this a few years ago. A similar article ran in the local paper:

    http://www.mailtribune.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20090809/NEWS/908090301


    In one of the last newsletters, there was a great story of a new boy's mentoring group. Once again, the boys were clearly identifiable and first names listed. I happen to know the names used are correct as I was shocked to see a young boy who I know. I was saddened to find out that he had been sexually abused but heartened to see that he's in therapy.


    I sense a change coming. Personally, I'm in favor of it as it proves that society is ready to except that there is no shame in being sexually abused. I'm not a survivor myself, though, so I wonder how others on WS, who are survivors, feel about this.
     
  12. Soulmagent

    Soulmagent Active Member

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    She is only 13 or 14. Sad they returned her to her father after they took her. If she had mentioned the video tapes couldnt they have gotten a warrent? Seems she was talking trying to get out I dont understand the way they handle these cases. I guess thats what makes things so easy for people like bobby.
     
  13. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

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    "Bobby and Michelle Palmer married in early 1994 and had a son the same year. "Ashley" was born two years later."

    So, "Ashley" was born in 1996. I hadn't done the math. You're correct, Soulmagent. She'd be about 14. Thanks. Maybe her caseworker or therapist felt that she's just too young to make the decision to go public yet. I can understand that.
     
  14. Texas Mist

    Texas Mist Retired WS Staff

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    My take on it is keep the minors private until they can make their own choice...adults s/b kept private unless they choose & only if they understand the what happens, or could happen, afterwards.

    While many may now acknowledge there is no shame in being a survivor, the survivors may still feel shame, they're somehow to blame, guilt for disclosing because of effects on family & community....they may not have disclosed except to those that they had to - which may not include all family members...even tho they've testified in a trial, they may not be comfortable discussing w/ the waitress at the local coffee shop, IYKWIM.

    IMO, it's a personal decision for each survivor and they all have to determine how best to survive...for some disclosing & going public & sharing their experience may be part of healing and surviving, and freeing themselves....for others, it's a matter of moving on -- putting those memories back in a jar, and putting the jar high up on a shelf, retrieving it only as necessary.

    I may not have explained my opinion very well, but IME, it's all very complicated, and not the same for every survivor.
     
  15. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

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    Yes, it all comes back to jars, doesn't it? I think you explained it very well, Texas Mist.
     
  16. Lovejac

    Lovejac These boys are my heartstrings!

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    I am speechless. I have to digest all of this before I can comment. I can say one thing, thank God for the neighbors/people/etc. that did right by this child.
     
  17. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

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  18. reen

    reen New Member

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    The sidebar indicates that she did want her identity revealed, but the paper chose not to due to their policy. Her name is in the Amber Alert report update in July, when Palmer learned of the abuse charges and fled with her:

    http://www.katu.com/news/51826182.html

    Where did he leave her in Myrtle Creek - with relatives? Did she call police herself to tell them where she was? I am just so glad it turned out the way it did, with her safe and him locked up.

    This kind of horrific abuse never fails to shock me, as widespread as it is. This poor child. She sounds strong, though, and is in a good life now.
     
  19. believe09

    believe09 Active Member

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    700 Months. You go girl.

    The part of this story that is ripping my guts out is her need to believe that this was some twisted kind of love. That in the end he loved her-I do not know what is the right answer....I do not know if she should be disabused of this fact or not. To me, just judging by the articles granted, there was no love here. Not from him to her.

    But her love story, please God, is just beginning.
     
  20. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

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    Believe--"Ashley" is young and she's got years of therapy due to Victim Witness dollars. The therapy is actually quite good and very intensive. She seems like a bright and strong girl and we can hope that she can be brought to understand and recognize what true love is.

    You know, we have a daughter who came from a seriously emotionally abusive background. Children want so desperately to believe that they've always been loved. They seem to want to blame themselves for any mistakes their parents make. You can't argue with them as they refuse to believe that their parents could have been evil or "bad". You have to teach that people can make horrible choices and that some people just do not know how to parent safely and that some people don't know what healthy love is all about.

    I've learned that children best learn what love is by living it. When they are surrounded by safety, gentle words, understanding, guidance...it starts dawning on them. When you promise them that you will never hurt them, never scream at them, never call them bad names....and you follow through with your promises....they start trusting. You can't convince them through discussion or debate. They have to come to their own understanding through a much more "holistic" way of learning.

    I've been pleasantly surprised to watch the growth in our child. She not only is starting to take our love for granted (a child's entitlement) but she's returning it. Every single day, there's another tiny crack in her armor. That is life's greatest gift, let me tell you!!
     
  21. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

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