exposing the dark side of adoption
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Ankeny couple charged with abuse increasingly called police for parenting help, records show


LEE ROOD   | The Des Moines Register

Explosive fights, tantrums, alleged abuse and profanity-laced yelling were reported to police dozens of times over the last decade inside the home of John and Joyce Bell of Ankeny.

A Reader's Watchdog review of more than 70 police incidents at the home suggests a couple who increasingly struggled to parent the disabled children they adopted from foster care.

In all, the Bells adopted nine children with disabilities from state care, according to two adopted daughters.

The increasing turmoil came to a head when the couple’s 21-year-old adopted daughter, Krystal, posted videos this month on Facebook of her 16-year-old brother with multiple disabilities being struck by both parents.

John Bell, 55, and his wife Joyce, 57, now face felony charges of child endangerment causing bodily injury after child-protective workers removed their 16-year-old and 17-year-old sons July 12.

2017 Jul 28