On the witness stand

16 year old Joshua Osborne took the stand yesterday. He admtted that he frequently got in trouble at school for cursing and fighting. He admitted that he loved his father, but not so much his stepmother. As a matter of fact he admitted to trying to kill his stepmother on previous occasions.

Joshua is not on trial. He is testifying for the prosecution in the trial against his stepmother and his father. They are accused of aggravated child neglect.

At the time of the inital investigation in Sept. 2004, 15 year old Joshua weighed 50 lbs. He told investigators and the court that he was chained to his bed at night. A fact that defense attornies pointed out was a result of him trying to kill his stepmother. He told that he was sometimes made to sleep on the floor and was sometimes made to wear a diaper. He was only fed soup. Unless he cleaned the house really good, then he was given real food. He testified that sometimes he would escape at night, trying to get to the kitchen to find some poptarts and bologna. Sometimes he said he walked to a nearby Walmart where he shoplifted food. He said that sometimes his father did sneak him some sandwiches, but that he had to eat them in secret so his stepmother wouldn’t find out.

Since being removed from the home in Sept. 2004 Joshua has almost doubled his weight. Joshua has not had an easy life. At the age of 2 weeks, he required a heart transplant. Doctors have testified that other than pneumonia which Joshua got soon after the investigation began, Joshua appeared to be skinny, but healthy with no further problems noted with his heart.




I really don’t know of anything more I can say about this one. It sort of speaks for itself.



  1. Kiki said,

    March 14, 2006 at 7:11 pm

    Since when is it okay to chain a child to the bed to keep him from sneaking out of the house and stealing? This article doesn’t reflex the fact that the parents were found guilty only of attempted aggravated child neglet instead of the more serious charge of aggravated child neglect. The defense stated that they were trying to protect their special needs child who was stealing from local businesses.
    I know this family personally and I find it sad that they used Joshua’s special needs as an excuse to chain him up at night….and the jury bought it. It makes me sick. At least they won’t get Joshua back.

  2. March 15, 2006 at 3:26 am

    Kiki, these articles were written while the trial was still going on. At that time, the “parents” were being tried for aggravated child neglect. Did they reduce the charges or did the jury only find guilt in the lesser charge?
    It is a shame they didn’t find guilt in the aggravated child neglect, because it took time for Joshua to get to the state that he was in. But I admit, one of the questions I had when reading the articles- was the question of why no one noticed. Joshua was under a doctor’s care and he was going to school. Why wasn’t it noticed or why didn’t he tell? Possibly those questions were answered at trial, but if not that may have been where the jury had problems. I am glad Joshua is out. But like you, I still have questions.

  3. Kiki said,

    March 15, 2006 at 9:33 pm

    Thanks for your response. I was not able to attend the trial, but I believe the jury only found guilt in the lesser charge. Sentencing hasn’t been announced yet.
    During the trial, his teachers testified and his doctors. However, they made it sound like Christy Osborne was a “great mom, very involved in Joshua’s education.” They stated that Joshua was always small for his age, which is true. However, he doubled his weight after he was placed in foster care, and that says something right there.
    I was one of his teachers in elementary school, and although he has special needs, he was a bright kid with a great personality. Even before this happened, he was a kid I always thought about.

  4. March 15, 2006 at 10:37 pm

    Kiki, thank you for being a caring teacher. Please don’t let this stop you from being caring and concerned in the future. No matter what happens with his dad and his step mom, Joshua is safely out of there now.
    And it is reassuring to me, to know that you will use your caring and your experience with Joshua while working with the other kids who will be following along in his footsteps.

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