The effects don’t stop after the trial

After police are called, after the trial, the repercussions of a crime within a family doesn’t usually end there. Emotionally, and often physically the repercussions go on for years.

James Francis O’Brien Jr., 26, has been charged with Plymouth police arrested him Tuesday on charges of statutory sexual assault, unlawful contact with a minor, corruption of minors and furnishing alcohol to minors. On the surface, that doesn’t seem to have anything to do with domestic related crimes, does it?

But when you consider the history, then that puts a little bit different perspective on the picture.

In 1999, O’Brien testified against his father, and provided witness testimony about how his mother and father had been sexually abusing him and his 4 brothers. He had testified that the abuse began about the age of five and that his father had sex with him, made him have sex with his brothers, that their mother participated in some of the sex acts, and as they got older their father began paying them to participate in sex acts.

This is the second arrest for James F. O’Brien, he was charged as a juvenile in 1997 with involuntary deviate sexual intercourse with a 5-year-old boy, previously spent time in a County Correctional Facility on a plea bargain for molestation and escape from the juvenile center. A prison official said O’Brien Jr. has been in and out of the prison several times since 1999 but couldn’t say on what charges.

http://www.timesleader.com/mld/timesleader/news/14101874.htm?source=rss&channel=timesleader_news

Can I say the previous abuse is what caused him to be an abuser? Studies show an increase in the likelyhood of an abuse victim becoming an abuser themselves. And I think a case can be made on the fact that those boys were never given an opportunity to learn normal interpersonal relationships. Do I think this should mitigate in any way the fact that he has now become an offender himself? No. At the point where he chose to become an offender, then he knowingly chose to harm another child, to perpetuate the abuse cycle, and to break the law.

But I do think this is a good illustration of how the effects of domestic crimes will reverberate down through the years, and can cause other future victims.

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Mom is finding out the hard way

Guns and children do not mix. If it is necessary for some reason to have a gun in the home where children live, the guns should have locks on them . Failing to do so, puts everyone in the household in jeopardy. And this mother just found that out the hard way.

Lin Lin Xie, 43, was caring for her son on Sunday when he found a gun tucked under a couch cushion and took it out to play with it. Of course she took it away from, just like any mother would. However, her mother’s instinct seems to have stopped there. Xie, removed the ammunition clip from the gun and laid it back down.

The boy picked it back up, and then the weapon fired striking Xie in the leg. It seems that when she removed the clip from the gun, she left a bullet in the chambers.

Prosecutors are reviewing the case for possible child endangerment charges.

After the shooting, police removed about 5 other weapons from the home.

http://www.startribune.com/462/story/302371.html

As far as I am concerned, Xie was lucky. No other child in the home was hit by a bullet. The child did not end up shooting himself. And the bullet struck her in the leg, and not the head or chest. What she is suffering is probably painful, and may even cause lasting damage. But she is lucky.

If you have kids in a home, and a gun- it should have a lock on it. All weapons should be treated as if loaded, and should be kept out of the reach of children. And if for some reason, you really feel it is necessary to have a loaded weapon, within easy reach- then it sounds to me like that home is too dangerous for the child to live in.  

I will say it again. Putting the gun on a shelf out of a child’s reach is not enough. Keeping the gun unloaded is not enough. If the gun is going to be in a home where there is a child, the gun should be unloaded, up out of the child’s reach, and should have a saftey lock on it!