April is Child Abuse Awareness Month

April has been chosen as child abuse awareness month, to remind people that they should be alert to signs of child abuse all year round.

Shari Rodrigues is two years old. When she was an infant, in July 2004, she was put into her grandmother's custody. Now that grandmother Cheryl Luker, is afraid to leave her hospital bedside. In Sept. of 2005, Shari was returned to her mother. On Mar. 15 she was rushed to the hospital, with a fractured skull, fractured ribs and bleeding behind her right eye. Her small intestine was severed from her stomach and her pancreas was cut in half. According to one doctor, the injuries “the worst he has ever seen” in someone not involved in a car crash, according to police.  She is now blind, though doctors don't know if that will be permanent. She may have brain damage. She remains hospitalized, though she was moved from the intensive care unit to a pediatric ward on Monday. Francisco “Frankie” Ramirez was arrested for causing the injuries to Shari. He was the live-in boyfriend of Shari's mother, Tresia Rodrigues, 26. Both were living at an apartment in a homeless shelter with Shari and their 5 month old son. Ramirez has admitted punching the child in the stomach for giving him a "disrespectful" look. His trial is scheduled for June. Shari's father resides in another state. He has never met her. http://www.mauinews.com/story.aspx?id=18469 This is a heartrending story. And the suffering of Shari and her extended family cannot even be imagined. Or minimized. But not all child abuse is so dramatic. Sometimes the signs are subtle. A little bruise, with a claim that a parent did it. Or with a story that doesn't match the injury. A child who seems fearful of a parent or caregiver. Sometimes, a situation that just seems off. Learn the signs and symptoms of child abuse. And be alert to them in children you meet. Pay attention to what your children tell you about another child. Often, a child will tell another child what they wouldn't tell an adult. Report your suspicions. I cannot stress that enough. And even if your first report doesn't give visible results, continue to report any further suspicions. Sometimes it takes a pattern to show the whole picture. Do not be afraid to get involved. Agencies will not disclose who reports the abuse. And isn't it worth a child's life anyway? There are too many children who suffer from abuse in this country. Though if you ask me, one child is too many. Be a part of the solution. Be aware, report, save a child. All year round. Here is a couple of articles on the signs and symptoms of child abuse: http://www.helpguide.org/mental/child_abuse_physical_emotional_sexual_neglect.htm http://parentingteens.about.com/cs/childabuse/f/childabuse3.htm

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6 Comments

  1. piper said,

    April 7, 2006 at 1:16 pm

    I would love to be Francisco “Frankie” Ramirez’s JUDGE and JURY…..

  2. Harding said,

    April 12, 2006 at 3:31 am

    “Learn the signs and symptoms of child abuse. And be alert to them in children you meet. Pay attention to what your children tell you about another child.”

    Yes! So very important. Even child care professionals need to learn this… and if they’ve already learned it, they need to remember it at all times.

    Nice post.

  3. April 12, 2006 at 3:33 am

    Thank you.

  4. Lace said,

    May 12, 2006 at 5:45 pm

    NATION WIDE BOYCOTT OF MCDONALDS > SEE MAP AT BOTTOM

    Go to url below and you can send McDonald’s an email .. for date and time put the current and it will go through. Please state we are Boycotting them.

    http://channel5web1.atiba.com/content/investigates/19060.asp

    Most states do not reveal employers of individuals on their sex offender registries. Each on the map below represents possible sex offenders working at McDonald’s, identified based on sex offender registries, court documents and news reports.

    Alaska: Alaska’s sex offender registry has listed some 14 individuals identified as being McDonald’s employees. Two of those 14 are repeat sex offenders, and the charges in at least 8 of those cases involve crimes against minors, including sexual assaults and sexual abuse.

    The registry has listed sex offenders as working in the following cities and towns: Anchorage, Fairbanks, Sitka, Kenai, and Palmer.

    Alaska is one of the few states that collects and publishes employment information of sex offenders. The registry can be searched at:

    http://www.dps.state.ak.us/nsorcr/asp/search.asp>

    New York: In August 1999, Oneonta, NY police chief John Donadio issued a public warning about a “high-risk convicted sex offender.”

    The chief told the Daily Star newspaper that the offender had “left a job working at McDonald’s Restaurant in Southside Oneonta” and warned the public that his whereabouts were unknown.

    Chief Donadio told the paper, “Right now I have no idea where he’s living…I’m nervous about him hanging around.”

    New York’s sex offender registry lists some employer address information. It can be found at:

    http://criminaljustice.state.ny.us/nsor/search_index.htm>

    Connecticut: A May 2005 newspaper story in the Bridgeport Connecticut Post references a former seminary student who was convicted of molesting a 16-year-old girl at her home.

    The story states that the sex offender “has been working at the McDonald’s restaurant in Monroe since he was found guilty by a jury of fourth-degree sexual assault.”

    A judge sentenced the man to 90 days in prison and ordered him to have no unsupervised contact with children, according to the report.

    Connecticut does not post employers’ names or addresses on its sex offender registry. It can be found at:

    http://www.ct.gov/dps/cwp/view.asp?a=2157&Q=294474&dpsNav>

    New Jersey: McDonald’s manager Joshua Fontanez-Diaz pleaded guilty in 2003 to molesting two teenage boys who worked for him.

    After serving his time, Fontanez-Diaz returned to work at another area McDonald’s and was promoted.

    In sentencing Fontanez-Diaz, the judge wrote:

    The court was left with the impression that defendant has never understood the seriousness of his conduct. His position as a supervisor of teenagers working at low wages in a summer job places a responsibility on the defendant to avoid unwelcome sexual conduct.

    Also, a March 2006 article by Gannett New Jersey newspaper references a child molester who “sometimes works at a local McDonald’s, but hadn’t recently.”

    The description of the unidentified offender appears to match a man on the New Jersey sex offender registry. The registered sex offender was convicted of aggravated sexual assault and endangering the welfare of a child in 1987. According to the registry, the victim was a male under the age of 13 – and the offender “used force to pull victim into building.”

    New Jersey does not post employer’s names or addresses on its registry. It can be found at:

    http://www.nj.gov/njsp/info/reg_sexoffend.html>

    Delaware: Twice-convicted child molester Oliver H. Marsh was recently re-arrested on new sex charges. Police say he was picked up at the Elsmere McDonald’s where he worked.

    According to the state’s sex offender registry, Marsh was convicted of 4 counts of 2nd degree unlawful sexual contact with a minor in 1995, and was convicted of another count of unlawful sexual contact in 2003.

    Although Marsh’s third arrest on sex offenses occurred at McDonald’s, his offenses are alleged to have occurred at his home.

    The state’s sex offender registry lists eight other McDonald’s employees, including 2 high-risk offenders. It can be found at:

    http://www.state.de.us/dsp/sexoff/sor_search.htm>

    Maryland: The state’s sex offender registry does not publish employer information for its sex offenders convicted of crimes in Maryland, however it does list some employers for non-resident sex offenders who move to Maryland after being convicted in other states.

    One such person who was convicted on charges of ‘enticing a child’ in another state, lists his employer as McDonald’s Restaurant in Colmar Manor, MD.

    Maryland’s registry can be found at:

    http://www.dpscs.state.md.us/onlineservs/sor/>

    The non-resident sex offender listing can be found at:

    http://www.dpscs.state.md.us/onlineservs/>

    North Carolina: A July 1998 article in the Raleigh News & Observer raised questions about how convicted sex offender Scotty Ray Moss got re-hired at McDonald’s after molesting a young male co-worker:

    Two years ago, Moss molested a teenager while they were working at the McDonald’s restaurant in Cameron Village…. In September 1996, Moss pleaded guilty to taking indecent liberties with a child.
    Moss was ordered into a sex-offenders’ program…, ordered not to be in the presence of children unless accompanied by a responsible adult and placed on five years’ probation. Last week, the youth who had been molested went to another Raleigh McDonald’s and saw Moss, now 21, again working with teenagers.

    North Carolina does not report employers’ names or addresses on its sex offender registry. It can be found at:

    http://sbi.jus.state.nc.us/DOJHAHT/SOR/Default.htm>

    Indiana: In 2003, convicted sex offender Andrew Lee Morris pleaded guilty to assaulting and threatening to kill a 16-year-old female co-worker at an Evansville McDonald’s.
    (Read the allegations in the lawsuit).

    Morris, who has a lengthy criminal record, was on the state’s sex offender registry for a 1978 conviction of criminal deviant conduct when he was hired.

    After serving his time for assaulting his co-worker, a newspaper report indicates that Morris was rehired at another area McDonald’s.

    A review of the state’s sex offender registry found some 13 other McDonald’s employees, convicted of charges such as rape, child molesting, sexual misconduct with a minor and criminal deviate conduct.

    The registry can be found at:
    http://www.insor.org/insasoweb/>

    Tennessee: Nicholas Aloyo, who was convicted in 2001 of soliciting sex from a minor, had worked at a McDonald’s in Franklin prior to his recent re-arrest for possessing child pornography.

    Probation officers had rated Aloyo as a high-risk to reoffend, and a judge had released him on probation on condition that he not accept any employment in contact with children.

    The franchisee that employed Aloyo released the following statement:

    “We take matters concerning the safety and security of our customers and employees extremely seriously. I would never knowingly hire registered sex offenders in my restaurants.

    The individual in question no longer works for my organization. The hiring of this individual was against my company policy and corrective action was taken to ensure that my hiring policies are adhered to.

    Beyond that, it would be inappropriate to discuss the specific personnel details of this individual.”

    James Daughtry
    McDonald’s Owner/Operator

    Tennessee does not report employers’ names or addresses on its sex offender registry. It can be found at:

    http://www.ticic.state.tn.us/SEX_ofndr/search_short.asp>

    Florida: In 1999, convicted sex offender James Campbell hired at a McDonald’s in Stuart and later accused of sexual assault by a female co-worker. The woman filed a lawsuit against the McDonald’s franchisee, which was settled.

    Florida does not post employers’ names or addresses on its sex offender registry. It can be found at:

    http://www3.fdle.state.fl.us/sopu/>

    Louisiana: Louisiana’s sex offender registry lists some 16 people who are identified as McDonald’s employees throughout the state.

    Their convictions include charges like forcible rape, felony carnal knowledge of a juvenile and crimes against nature. Most of those convicted involve crimes against minors.

    The Louisiana sex offender registry is among the few states that collect and publish employer information of sex offenders. It can be found at:

    http://lasocpr1.lsp.org/Disclaimer.aspx>

    Texas: In 2001, sex offender Jason Paul Drake was convicted for sexually assaulting a 16-year-old co-worker at a McDonald’s in San Antonio.
    (Read the court, police reports).

    Drake, who was working as a manager at the McDonald’s, had been convicted in 1996 of a sex offense as a juvenile and was listed on the Texas sex offender registry.

    The victim’s parents filed a lawsuit against the owner of the McDonald’s franchise, saying the manager should have conducted a background check. A civil jury found in 2003 that the, while the girl was raped, the owner wasn’t responsible for investigating the criminal background.

    Texas does not report employers’ names or address on its sex offender registry. It can be found at:

    https://records.txdps.state.tx.us/soSearch/default.cfm

    New Mexico: Officials at New Mexico’s sex offender registry say they list employer information for sex offenders only if they feel the job is likely to bring them into contact with children.

    NewsChannel 5 found at least two McDonald’s employees registered with the state.

    One of them was convicted of “criminal attempt to commit sexual assault on a child” and the other was convicted of criminal sexual penetration.

    The registry can be found at:

    http://www.nmsexoffender.dps.state.nm.us/>

    Colorado: A July 1992 article in Denver’s Rocky Mountain News begins:

    Martin Vasquez knew he would get in trouble again when he watched the children go in and out of the restaurant where he worked.
    He was right.

    On Nov. 20, 1989, Vasquez followed a 3-year-old boy into a restroom and sexually molested him.

    Vasquez was sentenced to 16 years in prison. According to news reports at the time, the developmentally disabled man had been convicted in 1988 for fondling a 4-year-old boy and a 7-year-old girl. He was sentenced to two years in jail, but placed in a group home.

    The Rocky Mountain News explains the history this way:

    With the help of a Colorado state rehabilitation counselor…., Vasquez found a job with the McJobs program of McDonald’s Corp. The program, designed to employ the handicapped, seemed ideal for Vasquez except for one thing: It put him in daily contact with children.

    “This was an invitation to disaster for him,” said Michael Linge, the attorney assigned to defend Vasquez on his second offense.

    At the urging of his counselor, Vasquez falsely claimed on his McDonald’s job application that he did not have a criminal record.

    The boy’s parents sued McDonald’s.

    According to the Denver Post, McDonald’s attorney argued that social services had agreed to provide prescreening and job-ready applicants for the chain. Furthermore, he added that the boy “still likes a happy meal,” the Post reported.

    But the family’s attorney insisted that Vasquez had been rejected by other employers who had studied his background.

    In 1991, a jury returned a $210,000 civil verdict against McDonald’s.

    The Denver Post summarized the case this way:

    The main lesson here seems to be that background checks should be done routinely and thoroughly for all prospective employees, no matter how exemplary they appear – and that employers who ignore this dictum do so at their peril.

    Colorado does not post employers’ names or addresses on its sex offender registry. It can be found at:

    http://sor.state.co.us/>.

    http://www.newschannel5.com/content/investigates/sexoffenders/sex_offender_map.html>

  5. Lace said,

    May 12, 2006 at 5:47 pm

    NewsChannel 5 Investigates:
    Congress Hears of Sex Offenders Under Golden Arches
    Posted: 5/3/2006 6:00:00 PM
    An exclusive NewsChannel 5 investigation of sex offenders working under the golden arches now has the attention of Congress.

    “I’d like to bring to the attention of the committee a recent investigation by NewsChannel 5 in Nashville.”

    That was how U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., began a statement to a congressional committee.

    The House panel was hearing testimony about the sexual exploitation of children.
    The congresswoman noted our investigation, which discovered dozens of child molesters and other sex offenders working at McDonald’s restaurants. McDonald’s markets itself as a great place for kids to eat and play — and for teens to work.

    “This has seriously troubled me because of the actions we have seen by these despicable people and what they go to to try and get close to the children,” Blackburn told committee members.

    In a separate interview with NewsChannel 5, Blackburn says she wants to see if more can be done to protect children.

    “That we have sexual predators who are going into a place like a family-friendly restaurant, going into a place where they can be hired and get close to these children, to me that is of tremendous concern.”

    A child safety expert has called for a national boycott of McDonald’s unless the chain does more to clean up its hiring practices.
    If you have information for our investigation, e-mail us. The address: investigate@newschannel5.com.
    http://www.newschannel5.com/content/investigates/19016.asp

    More articles at URL .. 14 states have sexual Predators working at McDonlads

    The federal government has sued McDonald’s franchises in Arizona, Arkansas and New Mexico for failing to protect teens from sex harassment and assault. Click a state to read more about these cases

    McDonald’s Restaurants Hire Child Molesters, Sex Offenders
    Advocate Calls for Boycott, Sex Offender Says McDonald’s Knew
    McDonald’s Manager Molests Kids, Gets Promoted
    McDonald’s Misses Sex Offender’s Troubled History

  6. its my name said,

    October 20, 2009 at 4:00 am

    OK FOR SEX OFFENDER TO LIVE WITH MEMBER

    I LOVE WHAT BIKERS AGAINST CHILD ABUSE STANDS FOR, BUT, IT IS A LOT OF BUROCRATIC BULLSHIT. YOU CAN GET OUTED JUST BECAUSE SOMEONE DONT LIKE YOU. BUT IT IS OK THAT 2 SEK CHAPTER PATCHED MEMBERS HAVE A REGISTERED SEX OFFENDER LIVING IN THEIR HOME WITH THEM. SEKANSAS CHAPTER IS OUT OF PITTSBURG KANSAS AND THE PATCHED MEMBERS WITH THIER SON LIVING WITH THEM AND HE IS A TWO COUNT OFFENDER AGAINST A CHILD. BEWARE, THIER ROAD NAMES ARE NEO AND ANGEL WHOM LIVE ON NORTH BUCKEYE IN IOLA KANSAS.


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