It's an investigative report looking into my ex-husbands child pornography case, specifically seeking to answer why a case of this size and breadth has sat at the local level for almost two years without action being taken.
When his criminal case opened in September, 2010, it threw my life into crisis. It compromised the safety of my family. It has been emotionally and financially devastating.
For almost two years now I have tried to communicate my fears and concerns to the proper authorities at the local, state and federal level.
I considered going to the media over a year ago, when I first wrote about why I feared my ex-husband. I knew media attention could potentially trigger a number of events, both positive and negative, and that I would have control over none of them. In any news story, the news agency has it's own angle and agenda. I have mine. The two are not completely compatible.
I was afraid that going public would anger the police. I was afraid it would incite Jim and precipitate additional violence, up to and including murder and/or suicide. I was afraid it would place me and the kids at greater risk. So I chose instead to wait. To sit quietly, to follow the rules, to let justice take it's course.
But that's not what has happened. Here is what has happened in the past twenty-one months:
- The case opened in early September, 2010, following the
discovery by police of over 18,000 images of child pornography on my
ex-husband's computer, including videos of children engaged in sex
with adults and with other children.
- At the time his case opened, we were in the midst of a divorce process. The divorce was put on hold, pending the outcome of the investigation, as it bore on critical child custody decisions. With charges, I could get sole custody and permission to leave the state. With charges, I could move far away, where I would be near family and feel safe.
- The investigative portion was wrapped up in December, 2010, at which point an attempt was made to transfer it to the feds. The transmission of data failed, however, and the Olathe police did not immediately try to transfer the case files again.
- In May 2011, Det. Foster, stated during public testimony that they still had not transferred the case to the feds, as they had been very busy with a number of other cases. He felt the files would be transferred within two months, at the outside.
- November 2011, almost a year since first attempting the transfer, Det. Foster again testified that the transfer of files had not taken place. He again stated that he felt it would happen within two months, probably less.
- At this time, I was also told by the judge that absent any charges in his case, he could not continue to keep the restraining order in place. Despite the officer's testimony. Innocent until proven guilty.
- Three months later, in February 2011, we were forced to conclude our divorce settlement. Eighteen months had elapsed since first filing, and the courts required resolution. His case had still not gone to the feds to be charged. As a result, I was not able to get sole custody of the kids. We now share legal joint custody.
All of this is corroborated by transcripts from hearings over the past year. Both Fox 4 News and I have copies of the transcripts.
I respect the Olathe police officers I have worked with on this case. They have always been polite and have responded to my inquiries and concerns, even if their response was not always what I hoped for. I am concerned and upset, however, that this case has sat inactive for the past 18 months. I realize they have other cases and must prioritize their work, but I believe that their lack of action has seriously compromised my family's safety and well-being.
I have accumulated $20k in legal debt litigating restraining orders and modifications to restraining orders and the breaking of restraining orders.
More importantly, I have continued to live in fear. I have had to monitor everything I do and say and write, wondering if it will trigger further violence or retribution.
This is no way to live. I will not live like this anymore. It is wrong. My children and I deserve better than this.
My hope is that public scrutiny will create an impetus for his case to move forward and hasten charges and imprisonment. It may, it may not. I have no control over the outcome. But it's all I know to do at this point. I don't have money or influence or connections. But I have two children that need to be protected. I have the truth, and if I keep telling it, maybe someone will listen.
I have done all I know to do. Let the chips fall where they may.
Note: It's my understanding my blog will not be mentioned in the media story. In the event that it is I will reiterate my comment policy. Comments and discussion are welcome and encouraged as long as they are honest, respectful and on-topic. Comments that are malicious or derogatory will be removed. Anonymous comments are discouraged.
Please know that at the time of airing, I have taken the necessary precautions to protect myself and my children.