exposing the dark side of adoption
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Ohio prosecutor: 5 adopted children were in a 'living nightmare' with abusive mother


By Associated Press

SPRINGFIELD, Ohio (AP) — A prosecutor says five adopted children of an Ohio woman accused of abusing them were in a "living nightmare."

Prosecutor Chris Wagner leveled the charge during opening statements Thursday in the trial of Vonda Ferguson of Springfield.

The 46-year-old Ferguson is accused of using extreme form of punishment on the children, including hitting them with hammers and sticks and burning them with an iron. She has pleaded not guilty.

Defense attorney Jim Marshall told the Clark County Common Pleas Court jury that the allegations came from two children who disrupted the home and later grew resentful after Ferguson and her husband gave them up. He says one of the children hit Ferguson repeatedly.

Ferguson's husband, James, was convicted last year of felonious assault, child endangerment and permitting child abuse and sentenced to 65 years in prison.

2009 Nov 5