Friday, February 17, 2006

Update: Foster Parents Who "Caged" Children.

Back on January 19, 2006, I posted a short piece about the Gravelles, an Ohio couple accused of abusing a number of special needs children who were in their care. The story was about how this couple had kept a number of these special needs children in wood and chicken-wire cages comparable to dog kennels. The couple's response to the charges was to suggest the cages were necessary to keep the children from harming themselves or each other. The couple was trying to get the children back because they had removed the wire, alarms, and doors from the cages -- not that they didn't want to keep putting the children into cages, just no longer with alarms and doors.

The couple has now been indicted on charges of, among other things, child endangerment. The couple has also been accused of falsifying adoption applications and lying under oath to get adoption funding. Naturally, the couple is claiming that these charges are all just part of a big government "vendetta" against them -- it has nothing to do with caging children like animals or anything. The couple's attorney says "The Gravelles are good people and they were trying to do the right thing by raising these children and taking on an almost impossible task" and criticizes the Ohio county for trying to ruin the couple's life.

According to the latest article:

[The] husband told the station he had no regrets about the way the children were handled.

"This is what we chose to do and to look back and say would I have done it differently? No. I did it the way that we thought we needed to do and to keep our children safe," he said.

If convicted, the couple could face up to 5 years in prison. Of course locking them up wouldn't really be to punish or anything, but, rather, just to protect them from harming themselves or others.

My January post contains links to other articles about this story.


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