9 children in protective custody, man
arrested for rape, Child Abuse
WICHITA, KS – A 37-year-old man is arrested on multiple charges and nine children are taken into protective custody following a report of physical and sexual abuse in northeast Wichita.
Police say Eric McFadden was booked into the Sedgwick County Jail on six counts of child abuse, one count of rape of a child younger than 14 and one count of aggravated indecent liberties with a child. He’s being held on $250,000 bond.
Police say a 13-year-old boy reported the abuse Friday at Wichita Police Department’s Patrol North. The nine children taken into protective custody range in age from infant to 13 years old.
Monday, Eyewitness News spoke with a neighbor at the apartment complex where the children live who says she was shocked to hear the accusations against McFadden.
“It makes me even more sad to know that it was here in my building, and maybe if I could’ve heard or you know maybe I could’ve said something and got them help sooner,” she says. “It’s just sad and I hate that people do stuff to kids. It’s just sad.”
Woman arrested for Child Abuse after
toddlers found in bug infested trailer
without any food
WASHINGTON COUNTY, UT – A woman has been booked into jail on a charge of child abuse after police say her children were found filthy and underfed in a trailer infested with cockroaches and other bugs.
According to a statement of probable cause, Virginia M. Martinez has been booked on one count of child abuse as a third-degree felony.
The Washington County Sheriff’s Office says they responded to Martinez’s home on the Shivwits Reservation April 7 due to a verbal argument between Martinez and a male subject.
Responding officers say Martinez was intoxicated, agitated and hard to reason with and that the inside of the trailer was “destroyed”. Police say there were holes in the walls, floors and ceiling. They said one bathroom had an inoperable toilet inside a shower, while in another bathroom the toilet worked but the shower was inoperable with holes in the floor.
Police say Martinez’s two children were filthy and a 3-year-old boy covered in mud was eating noodles off a counter that were so old they had dried out and changed color. A 2-year-old girl was also found to be very dirty, and both children had bug bites on their bodies. Police say the trailer was infested with cockroaches and other bugs.
Martinez did not have food in the home, documents state, and police say it appears she had no transportation or means to get food. Police say a family member came to the home while officers were there and told them the woman is an addict but doesn’t want to go to rehab to get clean.
Police say they observed the 2-year-old girl playing near a broken porch and asked Martinez to keep an eye on the girl, but the woman told police the girl had fallen before and learned her lesson and would not fall again. The child then fell off the porch and was checked out by medical personnel.
Martinez was arrested for child abuse and for failing to provide safety, proper care or food for her children. Police state the Division of Child and Family Services were to take custody of both children.
Backpage.com Pleads Guilty to
Human Trafficking in Texas
AUSTIN, TX – Attorney General Ken Paxton announced today that his office’s prosecution of Backpage.com has resulted in the company pleading guilty to human trafficking in Texas and its CEO Carl Ferrer pleading guilty to money laundering. This comes less than a week after the attorney general’s office assisted the Department of Justice with permanently shutting down the website.
Ferrer will be sentenced to up to five years in prison once he’s fulfilled the terms of his plea agreement with Attorney General Paxton’s office. His cooperation in the ongoing investigation into Backpage could lead to other criminal charges against individuals associated with the company.
As the largest online sex trafficking marketplace in the world, Backpage facilitated the sex trafficking of innocent women and children through sites it ran for 943 locations in 97 countries and 17 languages. It was involved in 73 percent of all child trafficking cases reported to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
“Taking down Backpage and obtaining a criminal conviction for the company and its CEO represents a significant victory in the fight against human trafficking in Texas and around the world,” Attorney General Paxton said. “I want to thank the Attorney General of California, the U.S. Department of Justice, federal law enforcement officials, Nueces County District Attorney Mark Gonzalez, and the prosecutors and law enforcement in my office for their outstanding collaborative work on this investigation and prosecution.”
In October 2016, Attorney General Paxton’s Law Enforcement Division arrested Ferrer in Houston. It also executed a search warrant on the Dallas headquarters of Backpage, uncovering evidence that was critical in building a case against Ferrer and the company.
Attorney General Paxton has made combating human trafficking a top priority. Two years ago, he launched his office’s Human Trafficking and Transnational/Organized Crime Section, which prosecutes human traffickers around the state of Texas. Earlier this year, he unveiled a powerful training video to teach Texans how to spot and report suspected human trafficking activity.
Santa Clara County Launches New
Child Abuse Hotline
Santa Clara County, CA officials declared April as National Child Abuse Prevention Month, timing the announcement with the launch of a new 24-hour hotline for people to report suspected child abuse.
What they failed to mention, however, is why the county needed a new hotline in the first place: to fix a system that, until recently, was so woefully broken that it left an untold number of children in danger.
In 2013, the county’s Department of Family and Children’s Services (DFCS) came under fire for dropping up to half the calls some months to its child abuse hotline. From July 2012 to the following year, call center operators answered an average of just 62 percent of calls. Only a third of the 18 percent of calls that went to voicemail were ever returned. About one in every five people hung up, frustrated by the hourlong holds.
It’s impossible to say how many valid abuse cases went unreported.
After San Jose Inside’s parent publication Metro Silicon Valley reported on the scathing 2013 audit, the county hired more call center employees and improve its hotline metrics.
“In years past … there was a problem with the phone being answered,” county Child Abuse Prevention Council Vice Chair Steve Baron said in an interview earlier this week. “That problem has been largely rectified.”
Under new leadership, DFCS has since seen a considerable increase in the number of calls answered, Baron said. People reported about 3.5 million child abuse cases each year in the U.S., about 58,000 in the Bay Area and more than 1,800 verified cases in this county alone. In 2017, the county hotline logged some 30,000 calls—virtually of which were answered.
“They’re capturing and answering, I believe, over 98 percent of every call that comes in now,” he told San Jose Inside. “Sometimes people just hang up or they change their mind so that accounts for the 2 percent. But now there’s a human being answering the phone and they’re capturing those calls.”
Gilbert Murillo, who oversaw the child abuse reporting center during the time it was dropping half its calls, said the county had reduced wait times to 16 seconds by last year.
For people who would rather not speak to anyone, there’s also an option to go straight to voicemail—a feature included for the newly launched hotline as well. And according to DFCS Director Francesca LeRúe, every single one of those voicemails gets returned.
The county’s newly announced hotline—833-SCC-KIDS (833-722-5437)—will field calls around the clock and will eventually replace the current system, which consists of multiple phone numbers.
“We have three different numbers in Santa Clara County, so it’s very confusing for people,” LeRúe said. “We just thought it was important to streamline the process, to have one number, and then decided it was important that it should be, in fact, toll-free.”
Funding will remain unchanged with the new streamlined system, she said, and may eventually save money.
But those three existing hotline numbers will stay in place for another year to give the county time to inform people about the new one.
The first big push in promoting the hotline comes as part of National Child Abuse Prevention Month, LeRúe said. The county encourages the community to wear blue on Friday to call attention to the cause, and to attend the 36th annual Child Abuse Prevention Council Symposium on April 27 in Campbell.
“There’s still a lot of awareness that needs to come to the community to let people know some facts about what child abuse is, what child neglect is,” LeRúe said. “Everybody in Santa Clara County plays a big role in protecting children, it’s everybody’s responsibility.”
County social workers, executives and @SupCindyChavez raise awareness about protecting children from abuse. #ChildAbusePreventionMonth event highlights new toll-free number to Report Child Abuse in #SantaClaraCounty. Call (833) SCC-KIDS (833-722-5437) 24 hrs a day, 7 days a week pic.twitter.com/uL4yzMArpr
— Santa Clara County (@SCCgov) April 4, 2018
Kansas woman arrested in Lampasas; charged with Child Abuse
LAMPASAS, TX – A woman from Wichita, Kansas, was arrested Wednesday afternoon in the parking lot of a McDonald’s in Lampasas and was charged with continued abuse to her 13-year-old daughter, authorities say.
Lampasas police arrested Jamey Rae Schmidt, 31, after responding to reports of Schmidt abusing her daughter inside her family’s vehicle in the restaurant’s parking lot. Schmidt faces a felony charge of injury to a child with bodily injury.
Lampasas Assistant Chief Jody Cummings said Schmidt’s husband, a 7 and 8-year-old and a dog were also inside the vehicle at the time.
Police identified evidence of a “fresh, minor” assault upon arrival, but further investigation determined the 13-year-old was a victim of prior assaults.
“We made an arrest for something we didn’t see, but determined it rose in seriousness from the evidence,” Cummings said.
Police did not say what motive was behind Schmidt’s alleged abuse.
Cummings said there were no reports of abuse to the 13-year-old’s siblings. The children were released with Schmidt’s husband.