“Hello. I’m from the government. I’m here to help.” Is anyone as fed up with government trying to “help” as I am? Last week’s blog post recounted the horrific story of Justina Pelletier who has been cruelly taken from her parents by doctors and a government who, of course,knew better. Thank heaven for all the press and general public outcry! Your voice is powerful, America! The criminals at Boston Children’s Hospital, etc. are being forced to re-evaluate Justina’s case. Hopefully, this little girl will be returned to her parents after a year and will regain her health after proper treatments resume for her mitochondrial disease. This horrific story has caused pain to Justina’s parents, family and friends as well as to this young child whose life is threatened each day she is not receiving the proper care for her rare disorder. Hopefully, this nightmare will end soon. But what about the thousands of other cases where CPS has to justify their existence by overstepping? CPS is another horrible example of government overreach and the refusal to use common sense in many cases. As promised, here’s one story experienced by a friend of mine in Phoenix, Arizona.
Last June, 2013, Brittney and Bryce Gurr observed that their 8 month old baby, Beckett, was acting strangely. He had been vomiting and had a low grade fever. They took him to a small municipal hospital in Gilbert, Arizona where doctors did a cat scan which showed bleeding on the brain. The hospital confessed that their machine was faulty and that the Gurrs should go to Phoenix Children’s Hospital for further evaluation. At PCH the attending doctor looked at the faulty films and immediately claimed that the baby suffered from “shaking baby syndrome” a very serious and deadly phenomenon in which a large percentage of babies do not survive. No further testing was done. This was based solely on the faulty films from the Gilbert hospital. The Gurrs were so shocked at this prognosis that they could hardly respond. Shaking Syndrome was absurd! They tried desperately to think back to what could have caused the trauma. Brittney was frantic and worried about her baby; not about what the doctor was accusing her of.
Rewind to a few days earlier. Beckett had been playing at Grandma Connelly’s when a family puppy was “playing” and pushed Beckett backward and he hit the back of his head. Collette heard the loud thump and knew she should watch Beckett’s eyes for signs of trauma. Two days later, Brittney was watching a neighbor’s children who were playing with Beckett. Not realizing that he couldn’t stand alone, one child simply let Beckett go and he once again hit the back of his head which resulted in a concussion. He started vomiting and developed a fever which are signs of concussion. Before taking the baby to PCH, the family gathered together to pray for his speedy recovery and safety.
As they entered the hospital, they were greeted by a deputy sheriff who was ready to take the baby into custody. The Gurrs tried to tell the authorities that little Beckett had fallen and hit his head but they would not listen to a word of pleading from these loving parents. They accused the Gurr’s of child abuse. Brittney and Bryce were distraught with shock and fear. Brittney began to feel like a terrible and neglectful mother. She, like Linda Pelletier, began vomiting herself and feeling physically as well as emotionally ill. Guilty. That’s all the authorities believed. The following Monday the hospital finally took another cat scan. The doctor noticed a spot on Beckett’s leg and determined that his leg had been broken. Brittney assured them that he had never broken his leg. No. Not an acceptable answer. CPS called Grandma Collette and informed her that the two children were now in state custody but under Collette’s care. The grandparents were ordered to be in the home and presence of the Gurrs at all times no matter what, because obviously, these abusive parents could not be trusted!
For the next four months, one of the four grandparents had to live with these parents to observe and/or report any suspicious or abusive behavior. Meanwhile, the Gurrs were subjected to lie detector tests and other absurdities. Even their three year old Benson was ordered to endure a total psychiatric evaluation from the deputy sheriff. “Why? We do not want our three old to have to go through that!” they plead. Twenty minutes later, CPS was at the door to take the children out of the home! Because to this trusty government agency, the parents’ response was “a red flag”. The Connelly’s hired an attorney at this point who told them that was ridiculous. Even the deputy sheriff told them repeatedly that he knew they were innocent. Thank heaven little Benson did not have to endure the CPS interrogations. “I’ve seen plenty of abusive parents and you are not those people,” he assured them. Still, CPS would not admit their horrid mistake. They seemed to double down in their efforts to justify their faulty accusations. Brittney’s health continued to deteriorate as the vomiting continued. She worried sick about her babies and this unbelievable nightmare they were experiencing.
The Gurrs, wanting desperately to put this ordeal behind them, contacted CPS almost daily to get an update on their case. Why was it dragging on and on after there was no basis for this atrocity? The file stated that CPS was waiting on the “findings of the childrens’ psychiatric evaluations.” Which never happened!!! Who forgot to record that bit of information? Only because of the Gurr’s persistence, and the help of their attorney, CPS found absolutely nothing but a loving family who’s little boys were subjected to life itself. Boys fall, boys bump their heads and guess what? Boys live through it and become stronger. So after months of emotional and financial horror, the Gurrs were proven not guilty. No basis at all for what they endured.
This article in no way wants to diminish the countless number of cases where child abuse is real and rampant. No child should ever be victim to any kind of abuse. But could we please use an ounce of common sense? This seems to be a running theme with government agencies. They pick on those people who seem to be law-abiding and strive to do the right thing. Why? Because those people don’t resist. They want to cooperate with authorities and incorrectly assume that the agency has their best interest at heart. That’s a lot easier than accusing and arresting those who are truly abusive, often a result of alcohol, drug or other addictions. Those people are difficult to deal with and resist! Further, those people are often pandered to because they’re on some form of government assistance, and it’s not “polictically correct” to hold them accountable in any way. So they get off scot free where law-abiding citizens have to endure the atrocities that the Pelletiers and the Gurrs endured. Why not go after those who don’t know how to game the system? Much easier. These government employees want to keep their jobs, that’s the bottom line. So when someone comes to your door and says, “I’m from the government, I’m here to help”, get out your checkbook and make sure your legal team is in place!