This is a syndicated post from Politics to Parenting and Everything in Between. [Read the original article...]
Next time someone asks you why you want the right to keep and bear arms, keep this story in your thoughts.
Mother and her 12 year old son, viciously gang raped, sodomized and beaten in horrific home invasion:
This horrific story occurred in an area of West Palm Beach Florida, called Dunbar Village in June 2007. The details are horrific and tragic, but thankfully the victims survived and three of the four captured were given life in prison, while the youngest, Avion Lawson, was not tried as an adult and only given 30 years in prison. Lawson cooperated with the court and named two others who were present and participated that night,Melvyn Young and Augustus “Gus” Fontaine, but they have still not been charged.
Since the original sentencing, Nathan Walker was re-sentenced on appeal to the US Supreme Court and his life sentence was reduced to 60 years in prison. Sadly, after six years have passed, only four of the ten alleged rapists have been caught and charged with the heinous gang rape of a single mother and her young son. Six others are still at large, doing who knows what with their lives.
Here is more on this mother’s horrific story:
Mother and son huddled together, battered and beaten, in the bathroom – sobbing, wondering why no one came to help.
Surely the neighbors had heard their screams. The walls are thin, the screen doors flimsy in this violence-plagued housing project on the edge of downtown.
For three hours, the pair say, they endured sheer terror as the 35-year-old Haitian immigrant was raped and sodomized by up to 10 masked teenagers and her 12-year-old son was beaten in another room. Then, mother and son were reunited to endure the unspeakable: At gunpoint, the woman was forced to perform oral sex on the boy, she later told a TV station.
Afterward, they were doused with household cleansers, perhaps in a haphazard attempt to scrub the crime scene, or maybe simply to torture the victims even more. The solutions burned the boy’s eyes. [and according to reports were going to set them on fire,but could not find a lighter.]
The thugs then fled, taking with them a couple of hundred dollars’ worth of cash,[their car], jewelry and cell phones.
In the interview with WPTV, the mother described how she and her son sobbed in the bathroom, too shocked to move. Then, in the dark of night, they walked a mile to the hospital because they had no phone to call for help.
Three teenagers: a 14-year-old, a 15-year-old and a 16-year-old had been arrested as of press time. Seven others were being sought. The 15-year-old was arrested on Thursday and is scheduled to make his first appearance in court on Friday.
Welcome to Dunbar Village, a place residents call hell.
Avion Lawson, 14, and Nathan Walker, 16, will be charged as adults in the assault and gang rape, prosecutors said. They are jailed without bail.
Police arrested the third teenager in connection with the gang rape on Thursday.
Jakaris Sansay Taylor, 15, was arrested at 6:45 a.m. at his mother’s apartment in the 1800 block of Douglas Avenue, according to The Palm Beach Post. Police say he was identified through a fingerprint found in the victim’s apartment.
Taylor was arrested on charges of home invasion robbery with a firearm, wearing a mask while committing an offense, sexual battery and armed sexual battery with multiple perpetrators, The Associated Press reported. He will be transferred to a juvenile detention center once investigators finish questioning him, police told the AP.
City Commissioner Molly Douglas, whose district includes part of Dunbar [says]: “Dunbar Village is a hell hole. They shouldn’t have to live in fear.”
More officers are hitting the streets, but “I just bow my head sometimes and think we just couldn’t possibly have enough officers ever to take care of all of this,” Douglas said.
The rape victim and her son have not returned to their apartment since the attack.
The woman fled Port-au-Prince, Haiti, with her son seven years ago in search of a better life. With no money, they landed in Dunbar. The two almost instantly became targets for crime, standing out as Haitians among the mostly American-born blacks in the housing project. Her car and the boy’s bicycle were stolen. Their house was ransacked.
On the night of the attack, she was lured outside by a teenager who knocked on the door and said her car had a flat. Nine more teens, their faces shrouded with T-shirts, barged in, she told authorities. They brandished guns and demanded money, then went beyond the imaginable.
“I was so scared,” the woman told WPTV. “Some of them had sex with me twice, some of them had sex with me three times. They’re beating me up. They make me do those things over and over. The man with the big gun, he put the gun inside of me.”
She said that when she was forced to perform oral sex on her own son, she told the boy: “I know you love me, and I love you, too.”
Investigators say it is not clear exactly why the thugs picked her house.
The boy’s sight has returned. Both mother and son are seeking counseling. “I have to try and talk to him every day. He’s so angry,” the woman said. “He said we never should have moved to Dunbar Village.”
The now 14-year-old victim of the Dunbar Village rape case will not face the accused defendants in the courtroom during the trial. He’ll testify via closed circuit television.
Palm Beach County Circuit Court Judge Krista Marx decided that as well as two other pre-trial motions relating to the case.
Prosecutors argued the young victim would be significantly affected, emotionally and mentally, if forced to testify face-to-face against his alleged attackers.
The state called the therapist working with the victim to testify in regards to his mental health. She said it would be in the victim’s best interest to testify via closed circuit television.
Judge Marx also denied the motion by 20-year-old Tommy Lee Poindexter‘s[not pictured] public defender that asked the state to accept the terms of a plea deal they discussed back in December 2008.
The deal never made it to court but Public Defender Carey Haughwout said the state should accept the deal based on her client giving police information in other cases.
The other two defendants, 15-year-old Avion Lawson and 17-year-old Jakaris Taylor will be tried in September.
[In August 2009]Lawson told in detail his version of what happened that summer night two years ago[June 18, 2007]. He says it started with Tommy Poindexter going around Dunbar and saying this to his friends, “We have a female at the house.”
Lawson says he knew the mother and son. He and his friends had talked about robbing her boyfriend for jewelry. He says when he went into the apartment, Jakaris Taylor (whose trial is scheduled for September) had a 45 and Tommy Poindexter had an M-15 assault gun. He continued to paint Poindexter as the ringleader.
Prosecutor Craig Williams asks, “Is he the first one you saw having sex with her?” “Yeah,” says Lawson.
The now sixteen-year-old told in detail how the group gang raped the women and described how she and her son were terrified.
Craig Williams asks, “Why did you do it?” Lawson replies, “I don’t know I wasn’t in my right state of mind.”
He pleaded guilty to all fourteen charges and faces eleven life sentences.
Carey Haughwout [Poindexter's attorney] asks,”You hope the judge sees you as less responsible than the other defendants?” Lawson says, “Yeah.”
In her opening statements Haughwout painted Lawson as the ring leader. During her cross examination she tore into his story. She brought up letters where Lawson wrote he was the “big bean” in Dunbar and it was quiet because he is no longer there.
Lawson also named two additional people he says participated in the attack in addition to the four who have been charged.
As horrific as this story was, if the mother had a weapon to protect herself it is likely this gang rape would not have happened, she or her son could have pulled out their own weapon before this gang was able to enter the home or proceed to rape and beat the mother and son. But, this is also another reason we all have the right to bear arms and protect ourselves, because police aren’t always there when we need them and we are our first line of defense.
In the end, what type of weapon you choose to defend yourself is up to you. A law abiding citizen has the right to own an AR-15, which is not an ‘assault rifle’, like we keep hearing the media and gun control advocates label them, but it is a rifle with cosmetic features that make it appear like a military weapon. In the United States, we also have the Constitutional/legal right to own a handgun or shotgun of any caliber, or several of each weapon, as well as sufficient ammo for each weapon for target shooting, collecting and protection. All of these weapons work the same and most are semi-automatic, which means you must pull the trigger each time a bullet is discharged. None of them are automatic, where they spray bullets like a machine gun, and none are military grade weapons, which have been illegal for citizens to own since the 1930′s. Currently, these weapons, semi-automatic guns, are legally authorized in the United States for use by law abiding citizens who have passed a background check, have no criminal record, or mental health issues according to a physician.
While most law abiding gun owners purchase their guns at local gun dealers and through gun dealers at gun shows, they are required to get a FBI background check, which verifies if they have any previous convictions or other red flags that would prevent them from owning a weapon legally.
It is also a fallacy that 40% of weapons sold at gun shows do not require a background check, because most weapons sold at gun shows are sold by federally licensed gun dealers who are required to perform background checks. However, we have to keep in mind the reality of the world, not everyone who owns a gun owns it legally. The majority of violent crime is committed by illegal and criminal gun owners: from street gangs, to young thugs, to drug dealers, or the mentally ill such as Adam Lanza who steal them because they couldn’t pass a background check or refused to perform a background check. There is no way for the government to regulate every single weapon, especially those in the possession of criminals.
Criminals obtain them through theft or the black market, like in Mexico and cities like Chicago, where they have strict gun control laws. Additionally, no matter how many ‘gun control laws’ are put in place they will break them.
Therefore, the real issue regarding ‘gun violence’ is not imposing more gun control laws on law-abiding citizens, making it harder for people to access weapons to protect themselves, but recognizing those who have criminal records, mental illness and a tendency to commit violence and keeping them incarcerated, institutionalized or away from such weapons. Enforcing the laws we have and improving the reporting system and referral system for the mentally ill needs to be changed, not placing more restrictions on law abiding citizens.
For those wondering where Al Sharpton and the NAACP were on this case and why it didn’t make national news headlines, check out Lee Stranahan’s report on this case. You might not be surprised to find out which side Al Sharpton sided with…he stood with the families of the rapists and called for them to be released on bail!
©2008-2012 Patricia Garza (1678)
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