If someone asks him, ‘What are these wounds on your body?’ he will answer, ‘The wounds I was given at the house of my friends.’ Zech 13 v 6

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Window Into The Heart


I am often asked how "my child" is doing? How does "my child" feel about the blog and the legal battle? 



"My child" dedicated this song to me today...

I believe "my child" gets the importance of what is being accomplished with this blog. I love "my child" deeply and fiercely. I would not have taken this on, if I thought I was perpetuating the damage that was already done. 

It's little windows into "my child's" heart like this that assures me that we are okay. 

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Enablers


The past two weeks have been emotional for me. Someone reached out to me from "the other side." A staunch supporter of Patrick and the belief that he is healed and repentant. I am still unsure as to why this individual felt compelled to contact me ...although lots was said, not one word of regret for her support of Patrick. I understand that the individual felt "lead" by the Lord to contact me but I think they missed the point of His prodding.

This individual happens to be at the end of her life and I fully expected some of the Rojas family members that have been in hiding to poke their heads up to say goodbye but was a little surprised to get a phone call informing me that Sarah Rojas was seen downtown Gig Harbor, yesterday, sitting on a bench sipping on a drink with another girl from our former church. So brazen. The warrant is only for Eddie Rojas so any other Rojas can come and go as they please. It's just hard for me to comprehend the lack of shame that these people feel. They really own their crazy reality and belief system.

I was also told that as of a couple of months ago Patrick Rojas was featured on the drums at Foothills Household of Faith. There was a family visiting this particular church that is aware of my blog and the dangers Patrick poses to children. Apparently the men in the church (at least the men in leadership) are aware of Patrick's sexual deviant history and level 2 status but the WOMEN DO NOT KNOW! Why? How does this help anyone? How does this protect anyone? Pretending that Patrick is not a potential threat to children and placing him on the worship team....really? God does not call us to be stupid or manipulated!


Sunday, August 26, 2012

Exhortation

I chose to read the charging documents for the case against Christopher Dupea. I haven't been able to get the information out of my mind.

I am not naive, I understand there is a due process and I do believe in innocent until proven guilty. With that said, I do not believe a person is innocent simply because they say they are or because they "seem like such a good person." Remember, I have lived this, from the other side. Also, from my experience, I believe shutting out individuals that ask valid questions or encourage the seeking of truth (even if that truth is one you don't want) is a red flag. 


In this situation the community that wants to desperately support the Dupea family and uplift the parents are admirable. From my own experience I am just fearful that the church community will blindly support whatever they are told without fact checking. My desire is for all involved to download the available court documents and read them. Know what you are supporting. Attend the court dates, if at all possible. It's amazing what is revealed in the courtroom. 


This stuff is real! Child porn is real! Childhood sexual abuse is an epidemic! It does actually happen. In YOUR community! I do not want to know the details of what Chris is being charged with! " It is reprehensible and disgusting. It is NORMAL to NOT want to know but what is the alternative in a civil society?" a quote from a dear friend. We could ignore childhood sexual abuse and hope it doesn't touch our child and just goes away....I am here to tell you that ignoring it gives the predators power to continue. AND THAT IT CAN TOUCH YOUR FAMILY! Is that really what you want? Would that be worth not knowing the sortied details?

I am willing to expose myself to the ugly details involved in cases that effect my community in hopes of exposing it and shinning the light on it so that my children can continue to be children, untouched by a sexual predator. Isn't that our job as parents? Be informed! Be aware! Know what you are supporting!


If you are asked to write a letter of leniency on behalf, of Chris my only request is that prior to agreeing to do so that you read all court documents that are public record from the convenience of your own home. If you have questions the detective in charge of the case is usually willing to speak with concerned citizens.

Pierce County Court Records Link - Be sure to click criminal records







Saturday, August 25, 2012

Too Close To Home


I was horrified this morning to click on a link asking the public to come forward if they have had any interaction with Christopher M. Dupea of Lakewood, Washington, in connection with child porn. It couldn't be "the Christopher Dupea" that I knew of....but after checking a few facebook posts, it became crystal clear that indeed it was. 

Other than facebook, I haven't interacted with the Dupea family in years. Ironically, the parents have supported my blog efforts with words of encouragement and design suggestions. 

Daily, individuals are charged with sexual crimes. Occasionally, I highlight other stories about childhood sexual abuse. I feel especially compelled to post on this particular story because this person is in my community, is from a large church community, and someone I knew. 

Any way you slice it this is devastating and life altering for his victims. 

Devastating for the criminals family. How will the family respond? Over the years, were there warning signs? If so, were they addressed professionally? It's still sinking in but I am willing to believe it, call it what it is, look into the specific charges and follow the case. 














Defendant:CHRISTOPHER MERRICK DUPEA



Daily News...it's gone viral

Man arrested after allegedly receiving child porn from child's mother

KOMO News


I desperately want to see this done right.
Who are we praying for? What are we praying for? Exposure? Least possible attention? Where are you getting your information? Would you encourage other victims to come forward? 

I have one request for all involved, PLEASE, I BEG YOU, DO NOT BURY YOUR HEAD IN THE SAND! Do not be easily deceived! 



Satan your kingdom must come down!






Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Trust

Losing trust in ones self is devastating. When this happens insecurities run wild. This is still my biggest hurdle, learning to trust myself again. My gut.

What haunts me is the fact that I can't send my children to very many places without taking a risk that they may be sexually molested. I really can't say with certainty to my child, "You're fine, you're safe with these individuals." Most children are molested by trusted individuals in their lives. We had know the Rojas family for many years. We interacted with the family weekly. Kathy Rojas was at two of my children's births. We worshiped together. Why didn't I know just how sick their family was?

Pedophiles are master manipulators and they are everywhere. Their enablers are foolish people that choose to have a blind eye. There are stories all over the place about childhood sexual abuse. In schools, in churches, at daycare, family homes, and with trusted coaches or friends.

You can really only know and trust yourself.

Pedophiles cross all cultural, racial and economical boundaries. A pedophile can be male or female, although the number of male pedophiles grossly outnumbers the female predators. 

I believe a lot of parents feel the older their child gets the less likely they are to be victimized and that is a lie. Do not buy into that lie. Without robbing your child of innocence give your children examples of ways to get out of situations that they are uncomfortable in. And when your child doesn't want to go with someone don't just dismiss that, really evaluate the situation. Don't ever believe that your children are immune from being sexual molested!


Saturday, June 2, 2012

Snapshot of Our Story


“Nothing fixes a thing so intensely in the memory as the wish to forget it.” ~Michel de Montaigne



For individuals new to Our Story, I decided to put together a list of  posts that will give you a snapshot. This blog has been written over a few years. It is kind of a diary about this aspect of my life. I try to be authentic about what our family has been through and I am fairly open in regard to my personal struggles and feelings about everything that involves this part of my life. Our Story is ultimately way bigger than our little family.

To help you understand Our Story:
 #1 - From the beginning
 #2
 #3
 #4
 #5
 #6
 #7
 #8

Wanted Felon: Francis Edward Rojas AKA Eddie #1 , #2

Level two sex offender: Patrick David Rojas #1 , #2

Being sued by Patrick and Jairus Rojas for this blog June 2010 #1

King 5 Interviews March 3, 2011 #1

King 5 Interview May 20, 2011 #2

Poetic Justice #1

Burden Lifted #1

Sweet Victory #1 , #2

Beauty from Ashes #1

Current Legal Standing: December 5, 2011, Patrick filed to appeal the courts decision. The appeals court took the case. We are at a wait and see point as of June 2012.

June 2012, Patrick submitted his motion to the appellate court of appeals. I am now waiting on my attorney, Talis Abolin's, response.

**If you have the time and would like to read Our Story from the literal beginning of the blog and see the process we went through, here is the link to the FIRST POST. At the bottom click on "newer post" to continue to review the entire blog.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

PHFCC Elder's Cover Up

Patrick was able to gather well over 30 letters of support (asking the judge to be merciful) stating that Patrick had such outstanding character, He was an asset to our community, Repentant, Even statements that had the audacity to boast that Patrick had taken responsibility for his crimes.

It appeared that the elders didn't have any real concerns about Patrick being a predator.

I believe even knowing all the details of what Patrick actually did to our child, that they still believed "It was only inappropriate affection."

Early on, it became clear to Eric and I, after we had a few interactions with the elders that "Something wasn't right." We didn't have a scripture to quote, just our gut feeling (Holy Spirit) to follow. After a series of attempts, where we tried to explain to the elders our belief that what in fact happened, was bigger, and more serious than "Just inappropriate affection" we were cautioned about gossip. The elders were very concerned that we were becoming bitter, that is was wrong to listen to "worldly psychology," and that we needed to get to a place of forgiveness (Which in their interpretation meant immediate "reconciliation with Patrick" and our family.)

We knew in our spirit that we needed to break from this congregation and it's leadership.This was the start of our isolation. Some would say the isolation was self inflicted. I would argue we were collateral damage that the leadership was willing to lose in order to save their church.

To stand with our family would have meant standing against the Rojas family. (Remember the father and mother had something to hide.) The elders, idolized Eddie Rojas! The elders were "used" by Eddie Rojas BUT they had an opportunity to tell the truth to us and the authorities BUT they chose to stay silent.


THIS IS KEY:
If the elders felt they needed to stay silent out of biblical obligation, then why, within days after Patrick was sentenced (and protected from further charges in our case) did they break "privilege"and tell a room full of church members that they knew detailed information about what he did to our child and that they didn't report it?

Currently, the church, Peninsula Household of Faith Community Church, in Port Orchard, WA. is still fellow-shipping under the same authority, Jim Cameron and Dave Barrueto.

It has been said that we are the ones in sin and bitter, I reject that!

Jim and Dave shouldn't have been afraid to educate themselves on the subject of sexual abuse. They should have reported all that they knew of the crimes committed by Patrick for the benefit of the abuser receiving a proper sentence and more importantly so the victim could receive proper help as soon as possible! (not six months later)

THE ELDER'S BETRAYAL IMPEDED JUSTICE!


More from: "What The Elder's Knew"

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Church Elders of Peninsula Household of Faith Community Church, Port Orchard, Washington

The elders knew in detail the full extent in which our child was sexually molested by Patrick but DID NOT TELL US OR THE AUTHORITIES!

In a previous post I explained that two days after discovering that our child had been sexually molested the elders had a meeting with Eddie and Patrick Rojas. The elders spent the day (literally) with them and came over to our home that evening.

We had asked a couple in the church to come and be a witness to the meeting (the husband was out of town) but the wife came. The elders, Dave Barrueto and Jim Cameron, basically came to see how we were and told us that they had been in contact with other pastors to get advice and that they had contacted a lawyer to find out their legal liability.

I remember them explaining that because we had reported the crime, they had no legal obligation to report it as well. That since it is in the "States" hands they were not going to talk about the case with us.

They wanted to know how they could help us in the process of healing, forgiving, and reconciliation.

Our friend that was with us has a background working in sexual assault centers. She directly asked the elders if there was any information that came out of their private meeting that we (the parents of the victim) should know? Any new information at all? Jim Cameron was at the original meeting with us and knew exactly what Patrick had admitted to doing to our child. The elders looked at each other and said,"No, nothing to add." They reminded us they were going to stay out of the legal stuff.

Approximately 2 1/2weeks after the initial discovery that abuse had occurred and the private meeting with Patrick, Jim Cameron and Dave Barrueto, Jim was interviewed by the sheriff detective working on our case. Jim Cameron ends his statement to the sheriff with, "In his opinion Patrick wanted to stay pure, but wanted to know what it felt like to kiss" and "It was just the wrong place and wrong age." (Jim's statement is public record.)

We received a copy of Jim Cameron's statement well after Patrick's sentencing was over. When I saw that Jim Cameron minimized the crime in his statement and in my opinion, he even lies by omission, I will have to admit my heart filled with hate. This man along with Eddie and Dave Barrueto knew everything. Jim knew that we, as the victims parents, didn't know what had really been done to our child. He and the others in authority allowed the church congregation to believe what happened was "Only a kiss" and "Just inappropriate affections."

A grown man (22yrs old,) goes into a minors (under 12yrs old,) bedroom at night and sexually molests them and his statement is, ".....just the wrong place and wrong age."


It was not for six more months until we would learn actually what happened to our child, When the prosecutors office called us and read the Psychosexual Evaluation to us.

Six months the elders let us believe "It was only a kiss" (which by the way, we never minimized.) From day one we considered that when a 22 yr old snuck into an adolescents room and gave them a "kiss" to be sexual abuse and so does the state of Washington! Six months! Then to learn it was much more than "just a kiss." Devastating!

If you remember from an earlier post our child had a "dream like" memory. The memory was very minimal and the elders along with Patrick and his parents knew that. The elders knew they did not need to legally report the crime, so they did not. BUT what about morally? What about getting the victim the help they needed as soon as possible?

Not only did these men (Eddie Rojas, Dave Barrueto, and Jim Cameron) influence the outcome of the charges filed by their silence but they greatly influenced a congregation to support a seriously dangerous pedophile. Somehow, theses elders were able to gain sympathy and support from the congregation for Patrick and his "innocent" parents.




Part of : "What The Elders Knew"


Monday, May 28, 2012

Not Alone

One night I was up horribly late watching late night mindless TV and this ad came on...Chills went down my spine...I was devastated and excited at the same time. Devastated because I knew intimately just how true the commercial "Uncle Al" was. I was excited because for the first time since our nightmare began I felt like someone was out there fighting the same fight.

I immediately jumped out of bed and looked their site up on the internet. Wow, not only was Darkness to Light out there, they seemed to be right on and making a positive difference by spreading awareness, which I believe is the best prevention! There are a lot of ads to choose from but these two where the ones that initially touched me the most. "Faces" is so heartbreaking and I believe every adult needs to view it. Note the ages of the person when they were victimized.
From our experience, far more people belittle the impact of childhood sexual abuse and don't understand the negative impacts abuse has on the individual. I have been so desperately thankful for the handful of people that really seemed to realize the impact on our family and the victim. The impacts are life long! I have said from the beginning of all of this, "That this type of crime is "soul altering" a person is never who they were before." I am an adult survivor of childhood sexual abuse (my babysitter's husband.) I never told. It is from personal experience both as a victim, then even worse, as the mother of a victim, that I make such bold statements.

I want to thank the people that are encouraging me to take on this blog.


From: "Prevention....a cause to support"

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Why A Blog

This is harder than I anticipated. When I pull up the blog and see the faces of Eddie and Patrick it hits me hard. I know the necessity of this blog and in having their faces out there. It just takes my breath away every time. Then I remind myself it's only a picture. 
I have been trying to decide just how I wanted to continue with this blog. Asking myself what are my goals for the blog?


My number one goal is for Eddie to be located and taken into custody so his girls have a chance of real healing. My next goal is to tell Our Story, partly, to set the record straight and hopefully reach out to others who might be hurting from the same type of betrayal and victimization. I hate that not talking about these types of crimes keeps them hidden and allows predators to continue grooming more victims. I hope to shed light on something so unimaginable and heinous to lesson it's power. 

How Prevalent is Child Sexual Abuse? (click on this link for more information)

  • Adult retrospective studies show that 1 in 4 women and 1 in 6 men were sexually abused before the age of 18 (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2006). This means there are more than 42 million adult survivors of child sexual abuse in the U.S.
  • The primary reason that the public is not sufficiently aware of child sexual abuse as a problem is that 73% of child victims do not tell anyone about the abuse for at least a year. 45% of victims do not tell anyone for at least 5 years. Some never disclose (Smith et al., 2000; Broman-Fulks et al., 2007).

I knew molestation occurred, I was even very fearful of it occurring (so we were always very cautious) but I had no idea at what an alarming rate sexual molestation occurs.

In thinking this through there are some lines I did not want to cross. I do not want to re-victimize the victim in my family, with that in mind I will only refer to what actually happened by the legal term of what Patrick should have been charged with or as "the crime." In addition I am going to refer to "the victim" or "our family" mainly. Know the victim was under 12yrs old and the abuser, Patrick D. Rojas, was 22yrs old at the time of the crimes....yes, plural.


I would ask you to send a link to this blog to all your contacts. Last I knew Eddie, Kathy and many of the children are in Italy. I have heard rumors that the two older girls have moved to different areas (One may be a nanny in California and one may be practicing as a midwife/Doula in the States.) You never know, they may be fellowshipping with a friend or relative of yours.

If you know someone in the Gig Harbor/Kitsap area they need to know who Patrick is and what he looks like. Patrick's 2yr probation was up August 2009 and other than being registered as a level 2 sex offender till 2017 he is free to do what he pleases. No one with authority or experience with these types of criminals will be monitoring him. You will only know that he is a sex offender if you google his name or run a back ground check in Kitsap county.


That sends chills down my spine!





Original post: "What I'm Thinking"

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Plea Bargains



Problem: Criminals are able to plea bargain down their charges.


Even more are able to keep their true crimes under wraps until it's too late to hold them accountable (like in our case.) Massive sexual predators are grossly mismanaged in the legal system. In our case, Patrick didn't divulge the extent of his criminal actions until he was covered, legally speaking, with a plea agreement. He was able to freely describe in detail what he had done and the deviant acts he had been involved in without fear of further prosecution as it pertained to our specific case. This is just not right.

Common reasons for plea bargains vary: It may be a lack of evidence that will stand up against a slick lawyer or trying to avoid the victim testifying in front of the abuser. The biggest reason for a plea agreement seems to be money - or really a lack thereof. The government saves so much time and money if a plea agreement is reached.


There are two reasons I have a huge problem with this especially as it pertains to sex offenders; first,  justice is not served, which re-victimizes the survivor of abuse on a different level. Interpretation of the plea agreement by the victim: I, the child, have just been physically violated and psychologically confused and experienced a soul-changing crime, by no fault of my own. But the state needs to belittle the crime committed against me, so they can save money. The second reason I have a problem with plea agreements for child sexual abuse is that, as a society, we truly won't know the potential dangers of the predators if we plea down. 


Level 1 abusers are supposedly not likely to re-offend. Where do they come up with this? Would you like to take that chance with your child?

The offender in our case, Patrick D. Rojas, is considered a LEVEL 2 Sex Offender (which indicates some expectation of re-offending.) I believe it's just a matter of time and opportunity before Patrick re-offends. I believe this blog lessens his opportunity to have access to children, some. 

There is no way to definitely say that a sexual predator will not re-offend. 


Why do we as a society give them time and time again to do more harm? 


I believe there are more survivors of sexual abuse than there are abusers. We need to join together and demand changes in our laws and in the way these deviants are managed! 

Friday, March 23, 2012

Thank You


Bekah and Michele
I consider this project to be very bitter sweet. The bitter is of course what our family had to endure to discover the need that existed at SAIVS. The sweet is the beauty that was created out of ashes. It has been a very emotional week for me as I have reviewed the before and after pictures of the sexual assault center and created the most recent posts. This project was taken on out of love for our family, knowing it was a desire of mine to change the experience that future victims and their families would have at this facility. Other than knowing it was going on I was totally hands-off and didn't know any details. Due to all the complicated relationship issues I, myself, hadn't even seen the finished building until now via the photographs. I have been flooded with various emotions but I have landed on gratefulness! I am so grateful that this transformation was made a reality! Thank you, thank you, thank you.....
_________________________________________________________________







I asked Bekah if she would be willing to write in her own words the reason why she took this project on. I specifically asked her to include details of what was done and the approximate amount of money that the project took to complete and to mention the main people involved in making this possible.


From Rebekah Davidson:
I took on a little piece of a friend's burden. Danielle shared with me the experience of having to take her child to the Kitsap County Sexual Assault Unit. It was depressing, dark and very run down. Not the type of environment to foster a sense of safety or caring for the many families that have to be processed there. Danielle said, "If I ever make it through this ordeal I want to do what I can to make it a more warm, welcoming and safe place for victims and their families." I was a victim of sexual assault as a child. I never told. I felt ashamed like it was my fault. It wasn't until the assault of my dear friend's child that I told of my experience. I'm still not sure why I felt like I could finally talk about it. I felt angry and devastated that this happened to my friend's child, to me and many other thousands of people every year. Taking on just a little piece of my friend's burden was something I could do to work through the pain of her family's experience along with my own. And hopefully make other families more comfortable while having to be at the SAIVS unit. 


Originally, I envisioned I would go in and try to just spruce things up. But on my first visit I saw a much bigger challenge. There were too many things that needed attention. From the dim lighting to the musty smell. Chipped paint and stained carpet and old everything, the place needed a major overhaul! How and where could I even begin? My initial thoughts going in were to have my husband and I tackle it in a weekend or two and try to raise a few thousand dollars to cover the expenses. Long story short the whole unit was like opening Pandora's box! I knew that this was much bigger than what I could achieve alone. I started asking friends and family if they'd be willing to donate their time and resources to help. The response was all positive! As I started to take pictures and make a list of what needed to be done by priority order I realized I needed professional advise. I contacted Michele of Michele Interior's. She had done several remodel projects at my home and I knew she would be a great help. I also contacted my sister-in-law, Donna Moreland. She was invaluable in giving financial advise and directing me to resources that provided grants towards the project. 


Here are a few of the things we were able to improve:
New carpet on the stairs and all upper level offices
New paint on entire interior upper and lower levels 
New paint on exterior 
Landscape overhaul with major clean up of parking areas 
New ceiling tiles to replace broken and stained tiles 
New blinds on all lower windows
Beautiful mural in the childrens waiting room 
New flat panel T.V.'s (dvd player for the children's) adult waiting rooms 
New toys and books for children's waiting room 
Local photographs and art for conference room and adult and general waiting rooms 
New flooring in 4 existing bathrooms 
Changing station for waiting room bathroom 
New furniture for many areas in the lower level 
New lamps to provide a softer more welcoming atmosphere 
New sound proofing and rewiring of victim interview room 
New paint, carpet, wall decor and furniture for victim interview room 
New area rugs and furniture for general waiting room and adult waiting room 
Entire new kitchen including all new cabinets and cork flooring 
New table and chairs, art and lighting for kitchen 
Kitchen supplies to provide snacks etc for meetings with staff and victims and their families waiting for interviews or trial 

The list goes on and on..........we were even able to procure supplies for victims that need food or other necessities on an emergency basis.

The entire project took almost two years from start to finish with details too numerous to list that could have only been accomplished by a host of faithful volunteers and local businesses. Much of the work had to be done at night or on weekends so as not to interfere with the operation of the center and so that victims and their families had the privacy they needed. I am so grateful for the thousands of working hours that so many gave. I'm also grateful for all the funding for this project. All tolled the project totaled just over $100,000.00. A far cry from my original thought of a few thousand dollars!

A burden shared turned into a vision and desire to provide a welcoming, safe place for victims and their families to be able to work through the agony and ugliness of sexual abuse.

My thanks goes to Danielle for sharing her burden with me and that so many were able to participate in a tangible and practical way to show care for her family and many others.


Special mention must be made of:
Josh and Donna Moreland and family, The A.Y. Petter Donor Advised fund, The Seattle Foundation, The Kitsap community Foundation, and several anonymous donors. It couldn't have happened without them!


From Michele of Michele Interiors:
I was approached by a client who became a dear friend about providing some design guidance for a facility that was used to help children who are victims of sexual assault. I was surprised that she would even be aware that a place like SAIVS even existed.  I was probably like a lot of people who didn't even realize how great the need is for places like SAIVS.  When I heard how her life, and the life of her very close friend were affected by a sexual predator, I knew I had to get involved. 

How many of us that count our blessings every day and have nothing like this to puncture our daily lives even give this a second thought in our "safe" community?  Probably very few if any.  The truth is, unless we know someone who's come out with their story or we've been part of one, we all either choose to ignore it's there or are blissfully unaware of it.  Getting involved with SAIVS was my way of helping families start to find an end to their trials. To provide the brave victims and victim advocates with an environment that was uplifting and promised hope and safety.  

It reminded me every day how very blessed I am and how you NEVER know the pain that your friend, neighbor, colleague, acquaintance or stranger that you meet may be suffering.  Because until they are brave enough to come out with their story, no one knows...  and when they ARE brave enough to come out, there is SAIVS.




A Comment from Donna Moreland:
Now I am crying also, Danielle. They are healing tears, for sure. So grateful for your faithfulness. Your friend Bekah did a fantastic job of rallying the troops to get the job done. So many volunteers, dedicating so many hours; so much talent and skill going into the project. What a transformation! Knowing that one out of four women, and one out of eight men have been victims of sexual abuse; not to mention additional victims of violent, physical abuse ... knowing the numbers of good people who have come through the doors at SAIVS ... I praise God for the change that you initiated here in Kitsap county to change the experience of the victim. You have given hope to each person who comes in the door, and additionally to the people who work there. Words can not adequately express how grateful I am to have played a part in the transformation of this facility which serves so many in Kitsap county. Trusting that God will continue to bless and multiply your efforts. 

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Beauty From Ashes

Special Assault Investigations and Victim's Services - S.A.I.V.S.

From our experience, one thing I wanted to do someday was return to the Special Assault building and give it a face lift. I expressed this desire to a few of my friends early on. One of my friends took this to heart and asked if I minded if she took on the task. Would I mind? I would be delighted! At that time I wasn't in a place myself to take in on. To this day I haven't been able to return to the building to see it in person.

Now you can see for yourself that my description of this place as being  cold and unfriendly is true.


S.A.I.V.S. building before the remodel

Waiting room for children & parents

Waiting room for children & parents 
Conference room

Conference room for attorneys & advocates
Adult waiting room
Kitchen area 

The interview room. Where a specialist interviews and video tapes the child victim when they talk about their experience.











Remodeled S.A.I.V.S. Building









New adult waiting area

New wait area outside offices

New wait area for children & parents
New conference room for meetings
New reception/wait area
New kitchen area stocked with supplies
New Child Interview Room
New Child Interview Room

New Child Interview Room After the Remodel

I cried when I saw the stark difference from the room my child had to enter to this welcoming room. 



Main financial supporters of this project








*My next post will explain why this project was taken on, by whom, along with more of my thoughts.
*Thank you for supplying me with pictures, Michele from Michele Interiors and Bekah.




Saturday, March 17, 2012

Patrick Rojas's Sentencing Process


Back to our story.....


The day finally came when Patrick would be sentenced, July 2007.

A few days prior to Patrick's sentencing, our child expressed a desire to attend the hearing. I panicked! But so much of what had gone on was completely out of this child's control. I decided I would at least talk to Eric about it and then called our counselor. This was one opportunity in all of this for this child to control something, even if it was just whether they wanted to attend the hearing or not.

I called the counselor and we had a lengthy conversation. The counselor felt our child was strong enough emotionally to attend the hearing and that it might be a real healing experience. The counselor decided to attend as well in case anything unexpected happened. The sentencing would be the first time our child would see Patrick Rojas since we reported his crimes.


We were ushered into the courthouse by the child advocate. As we exited the elevator, the first thing I saw was Kathy Rojas praying on a bench with someone. I have always wondered what could she possibly been praying (especially since she knew her son was a guilty pedophile.) Would she actually pray for God to keep secret her son's crimes? As we proceeded down the hallway towards the courtroom I saw Patrick Rojas, Eddie Rojas, and the lawyer huddled in the corner. We went into a side room until it was closer to the start of the sentencing. The courtroom was packed. The judge even had people sitting up in the jurors area.


It was at the courthouse when the prosecutor told us there was a last minute request from Patrick's lawyer for a change of judge. Only the defendant can request a change in the judge. Instead of having a judge that regularly presided over similar types of cases, our case was now going before a judge that routinely sat over traffic violations. Unbelievable? Yes.
Judge Daniel Philips was now presiding over our case. He had literally just been handed our case files, which included a 40-page sexual-psycho evaluation that contained very relevant information. To say that Judge W. Daniel Phillips was outrageous is an understatement. I lost any confidence in the court when the judge was suggesting that he would pass sentencing on Patrick without even taking the time to read Patrick's court ordered sexual psycho evaluation. It took a lot of bantering back and forth between lawyers to hold off final sentencing for one week.  


We had been told by the prosecutor to prepare a statement to read to the judge. The prosecutor suggested we have our statement written out, because she has seen too many people freeze up in the moment when they hadn't prepared a written statement and after the fact wished they had remembered to make certain points. We were told that anyone could address the judge and make statements. I asked the prosecutor if we should ask people to make statements on our behalf. She stated it would be good to have the child's grandparents have a statement along with us. The prosecutor didn't want to have a room full of people with prepared statements because some judges don't like that. Eric and I decided to ask my parents and two family friends to have a statement prepared. I told anyone who I knew who was planning to attend the sentencing that anyone was welcomed to address the judge, but that we had specifically asked three different families to speak.

A lot of people from the church were concerned about the fact that they would need to pick a side of the courtroom to sit on. They wanted to appear neutral. They didn't want to take sides. That ended up being a moot point because the courtroom was so full people just had to sit where they could find a seat. This attitude as you probably have picked up from previous post was really upsetting to me.


Grandma and Grandpa McBee stood and made a statement. The Dew's and the LLew's also came with a prepared statement to make. We decided that Eric would be the one to make the statement on behalf of our family, but we stood with him. When we were done the judge asked if anyone else wanted to make a statement and there were two individuals that spontaneously stood to make a statement on behalf of us. One of the women I would like to highlight stood and made a very heartfelt emotional statement from the perspective of and adult survivor of childhood sexual abuse.


Now, we had to return to court to find out if the judge would go along with the plea agreement or overrule it, which ended up being, August 17, 2007.


This final sentencing day in court had a very different feel about it. First, we didn't bring our child, there were less people from the church in attendance, and only Eddie and the older boys showed up in court, no Kathy or older girls. 

It was many peoples observation in the courtroom that this judge was very arrogant in his demeanor and speech. On the day of final sentencing the judge began with a lengthy speech that was somewhat offensive at points. One example is when the judge equated a sexual predator to a shop lifter or a drunk driver. That statement bothered quite a few people that were in attendance that day. It showed a minimization of the crimes Patrick D. Rojas committed. I am convinced that Judge Phillips could not have read the evaluation in it's entirety because he just went along with the plea agreement in place.


The judge was the last hope for some kind of justice in our case. The judge did not have the authority to change the charges against Patrick but he did have the authority to over ride the plea agreement and sentence Patrick to the maximum for what he was charged. The maximum jail time for the gross-misdemeanor Patrick was charged with would have been 1 year in county jail.


If the judge would have read the evaluation he would have discovered that Patrick should have been charged with child molestation in the first degree which is a felony that held an 8 to 25 year sentence range. The evaluation held information proving that Patrick had 5 other minor victims. How could the judge just go with the original plea agreement. The original plea agreement was made with the belief that Patrick had kissed our child on the lips only. 


But the judge should have known otherwise from the information in the evaluation. This process was so upsetting. Unjust! Maddening!


*From the information I gathered Judge W. Daniel Phillips retired in March 2009. 


*This was from numerous posts:
Sentencing, Sentencing (cont.)7/26/09, Sentencing (cont.) 7/27/09 and The Judge



Thursday, March 15, 2012

Another Blow To My Heart

From "Unbelievable" post. 

This week I was contacted and warned that a long-time friend (whom I have not recently been in contact with since I learned her son was a convicted level 1 sex offender) has been regularly having e-mail exchanges with Kathy Rojas. I know in my head people actually support what Eddie and Kathy Rojas are doing, but in no way can I justify their reasoning for the support. To see that someone who has known my family for years and knows our child very well is actively supporting these criminals (remember, there is a felony warrant out on Eddie Rojas) is another blow to my heart.

I could not just let this one go. I made contact with this person. I sent her the post "What Eddie Knew" along with a somewhat short inbox message on facebook that did have a snotty comment in it.

Here is her response: ( I am leaving in her son's name because he is a registered level 1 sex offender)


No, I had no idea. Just sent her my love. Jesus loves her, and so do I. I also love you. Jesus wants healing for all of us. Not hatred, but forgiveness. The comment about the support group was uncalled for. No, we are not. Remember, Zeke confessed all, he and we hid nothing. His offense was minimal and it is over now. We only shared it with close people who could support and pray for us, not those who would gossip. I pray Jesus puts your life back together and makes it better than before. In Joel, He promises to give us back 7 fold of what Satan has stolen!! I believe that for you, because he is doing that for me. God's blessings to you and your family.

I wanted to reply with, "You drank the kool-aid!" Instead, I really thought about my response. I want to share this on my blog because I want the people reading this, that may not grasp the mindset of the people supporting the Rojas family, to have a glimpse inside. It makes me crazy how these individuals twist the word of God to explain their denial of a criminal situation. But if you were to wear too short of a skirt or watch a "questionable movie" these individuals would judge you all the way to hell.

This was my response:

Wow, what Bible are you reading? God is not only a God of love. He is also a God that seeks righteousness, justice, a God of wrath. This same God of love has special scriptures in the Bible set aside for those who hurt his children.

You have never contacted our family to check on our child. Yet you want the Rojas's to know you love them.

When I told you what happened in our family, your very first response was, "They better get a good lawyer. The state will be out to get Patrick." Did it ever occur to you that maybe Patrick committed a crime and deserved a consequence?

Do you not get what taking the Rojas girls in hiding is teaching them? It teaches them it is more important to protect your pedophile brother who molested you over and over-over many, many years. But because he cried and said he was repentant (yet again), Patrick shouldn't face the authorities (the same authorities in the Bible we are told to obey) and accept the consequences for his previous crimes.

This would have also hopefully lead to the girls getting the help and support they need to properly start their healing process. Instead of having a warped twisted view of who God is. Have you considered maybe, just maybe, Eddie and Kathy are in sin/breaking the law. What else are they hiding? It is not gossip to ask questions and use your brain. Yet, you defer to them and want to let them know you love them. Confusing.

I also know that in spite of what happened in our family, God will bring good in our lives. BUT not because of it! There is a huge difference.

You're right. I do not know the details about Zeke. I guess I was someone you felt would gossip and not support you. Whatever!

What I do know is that whatever he did do warranted criminal charges, that Zeke is a registered sex offender, that he had to attend court-ordered therapy and was on probation, that he was not allowed to be alone with his younger siblings. I know that the state has too much to do and doesn't have the time to trump up charges.

Now I hope for the sake of innocent children that Zeke is no longer a danger, but I would not boast that Zeke is not a possible danger to children in the future. There is no cure for a sex offender. Any level of sexual deviant behavior is life-altering. I am offended that you would minimize sexual abuse. Zeke's success in life will require that he never assumes a life of normalcy. He will need accountability and need to be vigilant. Maybe because he is your son, it is easier to walk that line of denial.

Maybe you do live in the light. Does everyone you interact with that have children know that Zeke is a register sex offender?

You admitted yourself that you only told "people that would support you." How is that not hiding? You never told our family. I will say at least you obeyed the probation rules and did not interact with my family. You always had a convenient excuse why we couldn't get together, but not the truth.

I have minor children and one that was victimized by someone that started out just like Zeke and has parents that sound just like you. He confessed, repented, and now lives life as if it never happened. This is selfish thinking that lead to a victim number six (my child).

I just wanted you to know who and what you support, because now you are fully accountable before the Lord.

Danielle

*I reconsidered deleting this post but still see the value in showing my blog readers how parents of abusers would like to never look back or acknowledge that the sexual deviant person in their life really does need special boundaries to avoid future victims. And I believe as a Christian living in the light in this type of situation is to be honest about the potential danger Zeke poses to children. Zeke is now an adult and has tried to friend myself and two of my children on facebook several times.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Robbed of Innocence


Back to our story...

One of the things that was robbed from my child was learning about the beauty of sexual intimacy in the way God intended. I hadn't even talked with the child that was molested about sexual intimacy or puberty in any detail, yet. This child was so naive to that dimension of life.

My first discussions with this child about sexual intimacy was about a sexual deviant. I had to talk with this child about twisted individuals who do terrible things to children to fulfill disgusting desires. I needed to explain something to the child that they had no frame of reference for. Their first introduction to sexual intimacy was one of darkness.

Nothing can give back the innocence that was stolen by Patrick Rojas. Frankly, his parents, Eddie and Kathy Rojas along with Jairus are also responsible.

Of course I assured my child that they were not responsible in anyway for what had happened. That in no way was this child part of the darkness. Because of the lack of initial understanding this child is highly likely to have a point in their young adulthood of needing to process with a greater understanding what was done to them.

This is only one of the reasons our family can't "just move on" like some people seem to feel we should do. We do move on and then have to deal with something that is directly related and it throws us back, then we need to adjust, deal with whatever and try again to live life........ Denial doesn't change this process, either.