Food deprivation abuse cases



Hana Grace-Rose Williams (Hana Alemu Befekadu) and Immanuel Williams

Hana Williams  Hana Grace-Rose Williams  Two videos, before and after Hana Williams

13-year-old girl adopted from Ethiopia in 2008, by Larry and Carri Williams, died after being forced to stay outside the home on a rainy night. Hana Williams had Hepatitis B and was adopted at age 10 along with an unrelated 7 yr old deaf boy, Immanuel from Kidane Mihret orphanage. Williams had 7 bio children.

Both adopted children were beaten with various implements, hosed off, and forced to eat wet sandwiches and frozen food outdoors. Hana was frequently locked in a closet and made to sleep in a barn. She was required to use an outdoor hose to shower and port a pot for elimination.

The coroner said Hana's cause of death was “hypothermia and chronic starvation caused by a parent’s intentional food restriction, severe neglect, physical and emotional abuse and stunning endangerment.” Hana had H Pylori and Giardia (easily treated parasites). Hana weighed 78 lbs, having lost 30 pounds in the year prior to her death, and was about the same weight as when she arrived from Ethiopia 3 years earlier.

The Williams attended several churches but were home churching around the time Hana died. The Williams read and recommended "How to Train Up a Child". Both children were homeschooled and beaten with a belt, wooden spoon, a plumbing supply rod, and a gluestick.
Date: 2011-05-12
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Lethal neglect, Lethal deprivation
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother
Disabilities: yes
Home schooling: yes
Fundamentalist faith: yes

Facilitators

Persons: Gail Gorfe

Post placement

Location

Sedro Woolley, Washington
United States
See map: Google Maps

Girl adopted David and Jan Carpenter

3-year-old girl adopted from Guatemala in 2008 by David and Jan Carpenter was severely malnourished, had head trauma, signs of pooling blood on the brain and was having seizures. The girl lost more than 2 pounds in the 11 months since her adoption, going from 23 lbs to 21 lbs at almost 4 years old. A second child adopted at the same time was also removed from the home.
Date: 2009-10-15
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal neglect, Non-lethal deprivation
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother

Location

Little River, Wisconsin
United States
See map: Google Maps

Girls adopted by Verna Kennerson

2 girls adopted by Verna A. Kennerson were allegedly abused by their adoptive mother. The girls were allegedly denied food, were allegedly whipped on their legs until they bled, and one of the girls was struck in the face with a wooden object, chipping her tooth.

In addition, it's alleged while attenting school, the two girls had to wear a piece of paper stapled to the back of their clothing which read, "We work as a team, we lie and steal."

Verna Kennerson passed away a few months after her arrest.

Date: 2011-07-06
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Non-lethal deprivation
Abuser: Adoptive mother

Location

Moss Bluff, Louisiana
United States
See map: Google Maps

Five children adopted by Jeffrey and Rebecca Trebilcock

One boy and four girls between the age of 10 and 13, adopted by Jeffrey and Rebecca Trebilcock, were systematically starved. The eldest child, a 13-year-old boy weighed just 49 pounds, fifty pounds below average. He gained 25 lbs in the first 2 months away and more than 60 pounds 7 inches in the 15 months after he was removed from the house.

The Trebilcocks, whose 4 biological children (3 adult, 1 minor) were fully nourished, had a custom made alarm system installed to prevent the adopted children from entering the kitchen. They ate a vegetarian or vegan diet, which is encouraged, though not required, by the Seventh Day Adventist church. Becky had had weight loss surgery in Mexico and Jeff was obese.

Two children, a boy and a girl, were adopted from the Washington foster care system in 2004. In 2008, after Trebilcocks had been turned down for more foster care adoptions due to house size, they adopted the 3 girls from Haiti. They had just received an approved homestudy for another private adoption, allegedly for a child from Africa.
Date: 2011-03-01
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Non-lethal neglect, Non-lethal deprivation
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother
Home schooling: yes
Fundamentalist faith: yes

Placement

Organizations: Washington Department of Social and Health Services, unknown agency for Haiti adoptions

Location

West Longview, Washington
United States
See map: Google Maps

Children adopted by Anya James

Six children adopted by Anya James were physically abused by their adoptive mother.The children were confined in small rooms with alarms on doors and windows to alert James if they tried to escape. They had to use kitty litter buckets as toilets. James homeschooled the children and allowed only minimal contact with the outside world.The children were malnourished because James severely restricted their diets, police say. Their growth was stunted to the extent they didn't go through puberty as teenagers, and some children had downy hair cover (Lanugo) due to starvation.

Between 2000 and 2010, James received $750,000 in adoption subsidies from the State of Alaska.
Date: 2010-10-01
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Non-lethal deprivation
Abuser: Adoptive mother
Home schooling: yes

Location

Anchorage, Alaska
United States
See map: Google Maps

Boy adopted by Christy Mae Pensinger

5-year-old boy adopted by Christy Mae Pensinger was allegedly pushed down a flight of stairs and deprived of food by his adoptive mother.
Date: 2009-02-19
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Non-lethal neglect
Abuser: Adoptive mother

Location

Hollsopple, Pennsylvania
United States
See map: Google Maps

3 children adopted by John and Sonja Kluth

A 15-year-old and a 11-year-old boy and 9-year-old girl, adopted by John Edward Kluth and Sonja Kay Kluth, were allegedly beaten, choked, whipped, and burned.  In addition, the adoptive parents allegedly forced the youngsters to eat pet food, kept both boys confined to the basement, and locked the oldest son in a dog crate for up to two months.

According to news reports, the adoptive father claimed he and his wife were going to be accused of child abuse, but the children came to them already damaged.

The Canadian County Sheriff says the couple was receiving $4,500 a month support money from the state of Wisconsin, where they adopted the children before moving to Oklahoma.


Date: 2011-02-23
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother
Home schooling: yes

Location

Yukon, Oklahoma
United States
See map: Google Maps

Victor and Nubia Barahona (Doctor)



10-year-old twins adopted by Carmen and Jorge Barahona were physically abused. Florida Department of Children and Families investigated the family on several occasions. On February 14, 2011, Victor was found by the side of Interstate 95 doused in chemicals, his adoptive father had poured gasoline on himself and his adopted son, with the plan to set himself and the boy on fire. Police found the dead body of Nubia wrapped in plastic in the bed of the pickup.
There were 2 other adopted children in the home.
Date: 2011-02-14
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Lethal physical abuse, Sexual abuse, Non-lethal deprivation
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother
Home schooling: yes

Location

West Palm Beach, Florida
United States
See map: Google Maps

Larandon Nichols



3-year-old boy adopted by Alibra Nichols was beaten to death by his adoptive mother.
Date: 2010-07-11
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse, Non-lethal neglect, Non-lethal deprivation
Abuser: Adoptive mother

Location

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
United States
See map: Google Maps

15 children placed with Bill and Debbie Rettew

Fifteen special-needs children, four of whom adopted, and the rest informally placed with Bill and Debbie Rettew were physically abused, medically neglected, and denied food as punishment.

In February 2002, a deal was struck with the Rettews, in order for them to get some of their children back. The Rettews agreed to a court order that found that “they physically and educationally neglected their 15 children.”

The court ordered that most of the children be enrolled in public or private school, that they be allowed ample socialization time as decided by the in-home therapy team, and that they be provided with any medical care or therapy advised by social services.

At least three of the children asked that they not be returned to the Rettews; it is not clear how many eventually returned.
Date: 2000-06-01
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Non-lethal neglect, Non-lethal deprivation
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother
Disabilities: yes
Home schooling: yes
Fundamentalist faith: yes

Location

Greer, South Carolina
United States
See map: Google Maps

Boy adopted by Randal and Christine Arnold

6-year-old boy adopted by Randal and Christine Arnold was beaten, pushed down the stairs,  and starved, to the point that the boy only weighed 30 pounds. At age three the boy had weighed 31 pounds. He had starvation induced lanugo hair growth. Upon examination doctors also found various straight line, u-shaped and horseshoe type markings across the boys body consistent with the buckle of a belt found at the house.

Christine Arnold was found guilty and sentenced to 22 years. Randal Arnold was found guilty and sentenced to 18 years.
Date: 2010-09-17
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Non-lethal deprivation
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother

Placement

Organizations: Colorado Department of Human Services (CDHS), Jefferson County Children's Services

Location

Littleton, Colorado
United States
See map: Google Maps

Boy adopted by Tamara and Jeffrey LeFevre

17-year-old boy adopted by Jeffrey and Tamara LeFevre was made to live outside without adequate water and toilet facilities and being struck on the back, buttocks and/or legs with a belt, wooden spoon and/or spatula.
Date: 2008-01-22
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother

Location

Eagar, Arizona
United States
See map: Google Maps

Boy adopted by Steven and Mikelann Renwick

6 year old boy only allowed in the house for meals, was beaten with switches, and had to sleep in the laundry room with the dogs. He was admitted to the hospital with severe injuries to his head, legs and body, after being in the home about 1 1/2 years. Three other children in the home were adopted as infants. Mikelann Renwick is a Worship & Creative Arts Pastor of a Holiness church.
Date: 2010-08-18
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Non-lethal deprivation
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother
Home schooling: yes
Fundamentalist faith: yes

Location

Tavares, Florida
United States
See map: Google Maps

Children adopted by Dwayne and Pamela Hardy

Two children, ages 6 and 9, adopted in February 2010, by Dwayne and Pamela Hardy, were locked in their rooms and not allowed to eat. If they were caught sneaking food from the garbage, they were paddled with wooden spoons or a belt, which was the "Christian thing to do".
Date: 2010-08-12
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Non-lethal deprivation
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother
Home schooling: yes
Fundamentalist faith: yes

Placement

Location

Altamonte Springs, Florida
United States
See map: Google Maps

Boy adopted by couple in Manitoba

14-year-old boy, adopted by a couple from Manitoba, Canada, killed both his adoptive mother and his adoptive sister with a rifle. The boy claimed years of abuse prior to the shooting.
Date: 2007-08-01
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Adoptive mother

Location

St Lazara, Manitoba
Canada
See map: Google Maps

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