Thursday, October 15, 2009

Former Officer Travis Ezell Arrested for Child Porn

A former University of Oklahoma police officer was arrested and booked into the Cleveland County Jail on a complaint of possession of child pornography.

Travis Lee Ezell, 41, allegedly downloaded the pornography from his home computer.

OU Police Lt. Bruce Chen said Ezell is recently no longer with the OU Police Department.

Teacher Deanna Higgins Charged with Sexual Assault

A Spring High School teacher has been accused of having an improper relationship with a student, KPRC Local 2 reported Tuesday.

Science teacher Deanna Higgins has been charged with having an improper relationship between an educator and a student and sexual assault of a child. Both charges are second-degree felonies.

Higgins has been a science teacher at the school since January 2008. She is on administrative leave from the school.

Principal Donna Ullrich sent a letter home to parents to alert them to the situation.

"I want to assure you that the safety of our students is of the highest importance," she said. "Inappropriate behavior with our students will never be tolerated or overlooked."

Ullrich said a second teacher is also on administrative leave in a separate issue. She said she could not release details about that case until the investigation is complete.

Spring ISD released the following statement.

"Incidents involving improper relationships between teachers and students are not tolerated in Spring ISD. We have made it our practice to take allegations of this nature seriously. We will investigate thoroughly any report we receive and pursue criminal charges when appropriate."

Fannie Schwartz Charged with Endangering Welfare of child

The wife of a man charged with sexually abusing two young girls, is now also charged in the case.

Prosecutors today charged Fannie J. Schwartz, 47, of Seymour, with two counts of endangering the welfare of a child.

Late last week, Johnny Schwartz (right) was charged with statutory sodomy and first degree child molestation, for incidents that allegedly happened over an eight year period ending in June 2008.

Now prosecutors accused Fannie Schwartz of allowing her husband to have sexual contact with the girls.

Court documents say the girls were 6 and 14 when the abuse began.


Terry Lane Lee Arrested for Sexual Assault

In Midland, police have arrested and charged a man with two counts of aggravated sexual assault of a child.

A warrant for 46-year-old Terry Lane Lee of Midland was issued Tuesday, and he was arrested yesterday, after two female victims reported the abuse to authorities in Fort Worth.

Fort Worth Police and CPS then contacted the Midland Police Department about the case.

Police say the assaults occurred at west Midland apartment complexes over a period of ten years and that the victims and lee know each other.

Signs Of Sexual Abuse

According to the Arkansas Coalition Against Sexual Assault, more than 65% of all sexual assault victims are under the age of 18. Of every 10 people, nine have identified the assailant as someone they know. We talked to two doctors Thursday about the problems related to sexual abuse.

"A lot of times in working with children or even adolescents or adults who have been victims of any type of abuse, there can be a series of several different types of emotions," said Dr. Bill Smith, Clinical Manager at St. Bernard's Behavioral Health.

"If left untreated, sometimes this can result in major episodes of depression," said Smith.

Smith said sexual abuse can trigger anxiety, depression and nightmares later in life.

"A lot of emotions come to play and sometimes these emotions for some individuals can develop into some type of behavioral or mental illness," said Smith.

Smith said the best course of action for anyone suffering from sexual abuse symptoms need to seek the help of a medical professional.

According to Dr. Elmo Diaz, a psychiatrist with Families Inc, the major problem with sexual assault in victims of any age is that it often goes unreported.

"If we're able to raise awareness in the public, that number will shrink," said Diaz. "Obviously people don't recognize signs. People who are in touch with students, with the kids like the teachers or the parent itself."

"They're having emotions or feelings that kind of take them back to that abusive time. That can be very difficult the older you are. It's harder to do that sometimes," said Smith. "I think the more people are aware of this type of help in therapy and counseling can be very beneficial to children adolescents and adults."

"The first thing that we need to do is to listen to the children. Sometimes we brush off things that are not supposed to come out of a 3, 4 year old's mouth," said Diaz. "Sometimes they're telling you it's going on. What's going on?"

"If it's ongoing at the time, I would think the child is scared. The fear that they may have been threatened by the person who is abusing them or persons that are abusing them," said Smith. "They may have a fear that they're going to get hurt or that whoever the person is that's abusing them may hurt someone that they love in their family."

Diaz said one sign is that children become more isolated in society.

"Sudden avoidance of people and places, no I don't want to go, I don't want to go, that kind of thing. Pay attention to that," said Diaz.

"Fear would be probably the initial reason why the child or adolescent doesn't report that to a caregiver or a parent," said Smith.

Diaz said children tell one parent that the other is abusing them, but the report isn't recognized as believable because of denial.

"They have been sexually abused by one parent. They tell the other parent and they don't believe them. That kind of thing goes on a lot too," said Diaz. "No one sign alone will give us the clue of sexual abuse, but it's a group of things. If there is a sexual abuse, there will be a group of things."

Police Looking for Man Who Sexually Assaulted 7-year-old Girl

Police are looking for a man they believe sexually assaulted a 7-year-old girl.

The child was at Children’s Medical Center of Dayton for evaluation on Thursday evening, Oct. 15, Dayton Lt. Brian Johns said.

The suspect, an associate of the victim’s mother, is believed to have sexually assaulted the child several times over the course of several days, Johns said.

The victim’s mother got information that the assaults occurred and followed up with the victim, Johns said.

Dennis Earl Bradford Accused of Raping & Slitting Throat of 8-year-old

An Arkansas man accused of raping an 8-year-old girl and slitting her throat 19 years ago returned to Texas Wednesday night after waiving extradition.

Dennis Earl Bradford, 40, waived extradition proceedings after his arrest on Tuesday in North Little Rock, Ark., on a charge of attempted capital murder in the 1990 abduction and sexual assault of Jennifer Schuett, now 27 and living in League City.

DNA testing techniques developed since 1990 allowed the FBI to match DNA found on a man’s underwear and T-shirt to a DNA sample taken from Bradford after his 1999 kidnapping conviction in Hot Springs, Ark. The underwear and T-shirt were discovered near the overgrown lot where Schuett, naked and bleeding from a slit throat, was dumped on a fire ant mound.

In a brief hearing today at the county jail, Bradford waived appointment of an attorney and said he would hire one. The next hearing is set for next Wednesday.

Katrina Darasouk Arrested for Child Abuse

Prosecutors on Wednesday charged the mother of a 2-year-old -- who ended up with bleeding on his brain because of alleged abuse at her boyfriend's hands -- for putting him in a position that endangered his life.

After spending a night in jail, Katrina Darasouk headed into the courtroom with shackles at her ankles.

A judge set her percentage bond at $50,000 after she said quietly she understood the child abuse charge she faced and that it carried up to 20 years in prison if she's convicted.

Police say Darasouk woke up Sept. 20 to her boyfriend, Joshua Ironshell, yelling at her son and found them in the bathroom.

Darrek Andrew was unresponsive and appeared to be having a seizure.

But, police allege, Darasouk agreed with Ironshell not to take him to the hospital because he feared bruises on the boy would lead to a child abuse investigation.

Two days later, her son had another seizure while in Ironshell's care.

This time, Darasouk drove Darrek to the hospital. She told police later she thought her son was going to die.

He was unresponsive, his breathing labored, when she got him to the emergency room at BryanLGH Medical Center West.

He was taken by helicopter to Children's Hospital in Omaha, where he was diagnosed with bleeding on the brain and in the blood vessels at the back of the eye, spinal fractures and multiple bruises. He had old scarring on his buttocks.

Police say doctors treated Darrek, and he since has been released from the hospital. He was placed in foster care while police and Health and Human Services investigate, and he continues to suffer from lingering vision and balance issues.

According to court documents, Darasouk told police Ironshell was the boy's primary care provider, and that she had no idea how he got the injuries.

Police now believe she'd seen Ironshell spanking her son at least once before and told him to stop.

Sometime in the week of Sept. 12-16, police believe, Ironshell, spanked him hard enough they both fell in the shower.

Police allege Ironshell had spanked the boy while holding him by one arm, then hit him on the buttocks, hip and lower back causing swelling. He walked stiff-legged after the fall, they say.

On Sept. 20, the boy had a seizure and briefly stopped breathing, according to the affidavit filed in Lancaster County Court.

A second seizure happened on Sept. 22, the court document said. In it, police allege Ironshell and Darasouk did not take him to the hospital right away because Ironshell didn't want to be investigated for child abuse.

The charge against Darasouk alleges she went along with it, despite it putting her son in a position that endangered his life.

At about 10 a.m. Tuesday, police lodged her.

A week ago, they arrested Ironshell, later charged with felony child abuse and first-degree assault.

Benjamin Koller Arrested for Causing the Death of his 4-month-old Son

Prosecutors are expected to file a murder charge Thursday morning against a 26-year-old Lafayette man suspected of causing the injuries that led to his 4-month-old son's death earlier this month.

Benjamin Koller was arrested in July on suspicion of child abuse resulting in serious bodily injury shortly after his badly injured infant, Jack Sebastian Koller, was hospitalized. Because the baby died since his arrest, court records show charges of first-degree murder and child abuse resulting in death are expected to be filed during a scheduled hearing Thursday morning.

Jack Sebastian Koller died Oct. 12 while in hospice case. He was born May 27 and hospitalized July 21. The baby suffered bite marks to his left leg and both arms, bruises on his head, retinal bleeding, a skull fracture, a torn frenulum and a bruise behind his ear consistent with being grabbed by the ear, according to Benjamin Koller's arrest warrant affidavit. Doctors told investigators that fluid had to be drained from the baby’s brain.

Prosecutors delayed filing charges against Benjamin Koller because the baby was expected to die from his injuries.

According to Benjamin Koller's arrest warrant affidavit, Koller told investigators that he dropped the baby several times, would bite and shake him to get a reaction when he was unresponsive, and had held his hand over the baby’s mouth until he changed color to stifle his cries.

Jack Koller's condition unexpectedly improved after his hospitalization despite predictions that he would die and he was released Aug. 10 to his maternal grandparents. However, his condition again deteriorated and he was readmitted to the hospital, according to prosecutors.

Benjamin Koller is being held at the Boulder County Jail on a $1 million bond.

Officer Douglas Spensley Arrested for Sexually Assaulting 9-year-old

Macon County authorities say a part-time police officer from Warrensburg has been arrested for allegedly sexually assaulting a 9-year-old girl.

Decatur Police detectives say they arrested 42-year-old Douglas H. Spensley Wednesday morning at his Decatur home without incident.

Deputy Decatur Police Chief Todd Walker said Spensley was believed to be a family friend of the victim's parents.

Spensley was charged with predatory criminal sexual assault and was being held on $500,000 bond.

Spensley, who has been on Warrensburg's police force since 2006, has been placed on unpaid administrative leave, pending an internal investigation and any other criminal proceedings.


Robert Larry Pepper Arrested for Child Abuse

A Kannapolis man has been charged with child abuse after EMS paramedics found a 12-year-old girl in a home with two drunken men.

The Rowan County Sheriff’s Office charged Robert Larry Pepper, of 2685 China Grove Road, Kannapolis, with misdemeanor child abuse and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Capt. John Sifford said EMS paramedics responded to the 2695 China Grove Road address to answer a call related to a fall around 1 a.m. Saturday.

Sifford said the paramedics found Tony Lavon Grimes, another resident of the single-wide mobile home, on the floor, apparently passed out.

EMS and deputies found Pepper drinking beer, unstable on his feet and the home "smelled horribly of beer," according to the report.

Pepper told paramedics he was plastered and needed an ambulance to go to the hospital.

Pepper’s 12-year-old daughter, who was also there, was described as upset and crying.

Deputies contacted the Rowan County Department of Social Services and stood by until a staffer arrived.

Sifford said the parents are divorced and the mother has custody during the week and the father has custody on the weekend.

Sifford said the child told officers that she slept in a recliner during weekend visits.

Thomas Hunt Arrested for Sexual Assault

A North Platte man faces three more counts of sexual assault of a child.

Lincoln County authorities say 40-year-old Thomas Hunt was arrested Wednesday on accusations stemming in part from an incident last summer at Lake Maloney, which is south of North Platte.

Hunt had already been charged with third-degree sexual assault of a child - the same 11-year-old girl - and had been free on $5,000 bond.

North Platte Police Lt. Rick Ryan told station KOOQ of North Platte that incidents stemming back two years with the girl are part of the investigation.

His new bail amount was set at $100,000.

Attempts by The Associated Press to reach Hunt on Thursday were unsuccessful. Jail officials say he's still in custody. His attorney wouldn't comment.
Information from: KOOQ-AM

Remonse Holt Charged with Sexual Assault on 7-year-old

A teenager has been charged in the sexual assault of a 7-year-old.

Remonse Holt, 17, is charged with one count of predatory criminal sexual assault after an incident that allegedly occurred early last month in the 6800-block of South Wabash Avenue.

The young female victim was treated at Comer Children's Hospital and released.
Police say the suspect, a CPS student who resides in the 2300-block of South Kostner Avenue, knew the victim.

Holt was arrested at 2 p.m. Wednesday at 3000 S. King Dr., Dunbar Vocational Career Academy High School.