Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Current Events: Another Child Molester Off The Streets? - For Now

On Friday night July 17, 2009, Minorva Murillo was doing her laundry at the mobile home park near Greenfield Road and Apache Trail in Apache Junction, Arizona when she heard her baby Jenifer, age 2 ½, scream. Minorva ran outside to find Jenifer gone. She asked her other children where Jenifer was and they said they didn’t know. Minorva called the police. A search followed and lasted throughout the night. Minorva told the police of a man she’d seen about an hour before her child went missing and gave a description of him. The police learned he was staying at the mobile home park.

Jenifer was found at his house and police arrested the man, 21-year-old, Alec Holtz. Jenifer was in good spirits despite what she endured during her 19-hour stay with a now accused child molester. Sunday the 19th of July police charged Holtz with child molestation, kidnaping and child endangerment.

I pray if this man is guilty that he is put away for a very long time and not simply a few years. The sentencing of these criminals who violate our children is ridiculous. Yes, prisons are full; yes, they go through the required procedures but they do not need to be let back out on the streets to ‘re offend.’ Holtz allegedly has raped a 2 ½ year-old baby! Will an ankle bracelet be enough? I am not sure it will. These monitors are not going to tell an understaffed, overworked and underpaid parole officer the suspect is in the presence of a child; unless by fate’s intervention their monitor status is checked while they are abducting a child. They aren’t going to show the suspect is in the act of violating a child. All they will do is - ‘after’ a child has gone missing - show that the suspect was in the approximate area. Out of his or her required distance of a child.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Personal Entry: Hands of Friendship and Thoughts of Abuse

As I sit here thinking of how friendship is special, I think of how it isn’t set on a time limit or penciled scheduling; it’s constant, vigilant and caring. I think of how it’s there any given time speaking words of encouragement, listening and understanding, that it’s not setting terms. I think of how it’s the hand held out in time of need, a hand saying I am here to help you shoulder your troubles, just let them go.

I sit here thinking of abuse and how I wonder if I’ll ever close the bedroom door again, if the fear someone could come up to it unseen will ever allow me to close it. And I think of that hand. I wonder if I’ll ever sleep with my back turned to the door again. I wonder if the need to have it wide open is so I can see down the dark corridor of the hallway. I wonder if the need to know, to see what and who is there will ever stop and peace will fill my nights again.

And while thinking I find a nervousness inside me begin to churn and that I need that hand of friendship to talk with. I think of how I must constantly move, not knowing true restfulness; of how I suddenly find myself awake and sitting in the middle of the bed or sitting with my feet on the floor, ready for a quick exit. I think of how the smallest of unrecognized sound brings my head up, my ears and eyes alert. I think of the need to shelter myself; I think of that need to self-protect emotionally by internalizing the actions of another. I think of the mind-set of an abuser, wondering why they can’t reach out their hands in love and caring and not resentfulness, anger or violence. I wonder if it’s something inside them that creates a spur of the moment action or if it’s been there all along and suddenly rages.

I wonder about the anger that stems from the abusers’ health, and how ones physical health causes personality changes. I wonder if a way exists to really understand what goes on in another’s mind; the ones who appear born without conscience and only know how to live with an urge to cause hurt to animals or their fellow human beings. I think about the ‘I’m in it for the long haul’ effect, that ‘till death us do part’ line. And I know I must be there for the long haul but also need help with that hand of friendship beside me.

While I sit in the middle of the floor with space around me, I wonder why I need that space; if the need to know there’s an escape is a persistent factor in back of my mind. Why small spaces are not an option. And, I think of the hand of friendship, that one friend, who with patience waited for me to talk, giving me time to speak between the tears that I was shedding. Who with so much caring held out a hand and said, let me help shoulder your troubles; don’t you remember the faith you often spoke of in the past, of how you leaned on that faith? Let the hand of faith reach you tonight, take that hand held out to you. Take my hand of friendship as it was His and let the light of His love fill your heart; know you have the strength to endure, you will persevere, you will become a stronger person. You will overcome the obstacles you feel are binding you.

I think of all the Advocates out there, those Hands held out like the hand of Susan Murphy Milano, Anny Jacoby and Delilah; I think of all the other advocates and how they daily reach out and help. I think of how, by being the shoulder for abused ones’ tears, they are true Hands. I think of the hand of friendship that reached out to me, of the shows I have heard, the tears I’ve shed for victims, the joy I’ve felt knowing an abused person has found just the right Hand.

And so, I sit here tonight and think of how friendship is mostly the hand of God at work, always waiting for me to take His hand and put all the worries on His shoulders.

But still, I wonder about that escape.