Hi, this is Jennifer and this is my update for October 1 2008.
There is so much to tell you! My mom turned herself into the American authorities. It took courage for her to return to face charges when her home country failed her and her children so miserably. She didn't have to return. She has asylum and is protected in the Netherlands but she wanted to make things right.
Even though we had some really great lawyers, advocates, politicians and great folks like you supporting us, it was still a trying time. I was disturbed seeing my strong, happy, loving mother reduced to a bundle of nerves when she appeared in Minnesota. When a balloon popped she nearly ran for cover. She actually checked her body to see if she had been shot. Isn’t that just sad? It is a textbook case of Post Traumatic Stress. After all, my father had threatened to kill her on numerous occasions.
Heck I was even scared of what he might do. That is why Zachary didn’t come. Well… to be honest… Zachary didn’t come because he was afraid of what he might do to my dad. My father didn't even have the nerve to show up. I came home after missing for 14 years and he didn't even care. Can you believe that he just got off scot free from all those beating and broken bones he gave to us? It’s so unfair!
The district attorney dropped all charges against my mom! The Hennepin County Authorities wanted some sort of remorse from my mom. She wouldn’t budge. Her attorney, Alan Rosenfeld was correct. My mother could agree to “Contempt of Court” with pride. She said “Yes, I can honestly say that I have contempt for the court which failed to protect my children.”
Did you hear what else she had to say when it was her chance to talk in court? In front of everybody my mother said “I just want to say something to my children. Zachary and Jennifer I believe you!” Isn’t she great?
So what that she is temporarily on probation. She is going to complete the community service as soon as possible, which she is already doing, volunteering with war orphans and for domestic violence organizations.
Some people are shouting that my mother should be punished, but punished for what? I really wish I could make our story as clear as possible:
My dad beat my mom!
There were at least 14 medical records submitted to the court of his injuries to my mother alone. My father testified under oath to breaking my mother’s nose 3 times!!!
He also testified to dislocating my mother’s shoulder in front of us kids!
How can anyone ignore that?
My father also fractured the skull of my brother!
How can anyone forgive that?
The scariest thing no one wants to believe that this could happen in the Family Court System of the United States of America. The public keeps a blind eye and that is how the courts get away with it. When the truth is finally exposed there is no accountability because all the court personnel have immunity.
Look at all the evidence. The judge even found that there was domestic violence. So where did it go wrong?
The big ole’ judge, Michael Davis couldn’t understand why my mother would be afraid of that tiny little wimp, my father. Everyone knew that my father was a coward. The only thing he could do was beat up on woman and children to feel like a man. Judge Davis obviously didn't have the proper education to recognize the symptoms of domestic violence. What is a battered woman to do when the judge says "It's about time you get over the abuse!"???
I really admire my mom because she stood up to the system when the system failed and she continues to fight for what is right. She said that she holds Hennepin County accountable for every beating and bruise that happened to us after they were made aware of the abuse.
We told my mom that our dad was still hurting us.
She saw the bruises.
Our pediatrician treated our injuries and he was the first one to tend to my brothers broken and swollen skull.
Our doctors believed us! They tried to protect us.
Why wouldn’t the court?
I want answers!