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Saturday, November 11, 2006

A real monster hiding under the bed

This is the kind of crime for which they should reserve the death penalty. 

I'm not talking about the painless euthanasia of the gas chamber or lethal injection.  No, this calls for somewhat more medieval methods such as the systematic tearing off of skin and fingernails... followed by the use of block & tackle to wrest the limbs from their sockets... and eventually... in due time... death by slow disembowelment.

As the father of a 12 year old daughter I would volunteer to carry out such a sentence on this predator.  Forget volunteering... I would pay for the privilege.

220_31_13

Posted by David Bogner on November 11, 2006 | Permalink

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» Monster Under The Bed from customerservant.com
A PAEDO seduced a girl of 12 — then lived in her bedroom for THREE MONTHS without her mother finding out. Scott Jennings, 22, cut a giant hole in the bottom of the youngster’s divan bed then used it as a secret den to evade detection if somebody ca... [Read More]

Tracked on Nov 13, 2006 4:02:50 PM

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And you know how long this guy actually got? Two years... and of course he'll be out after about half of that. Even though he was convicted of repeated rape.

Posted by: Judy | Nov 11, 2006 7:56:18 PM

Where were the parents?

They never entered their own kid's room without knocking?

Never heard his voice - in a room with 2 girls?

Where were the parents?

Posted by: Ben-David | Nov 11, 2006 9:57:10 PM

I echo Ben-David's words. I cannot fathom how his presence would go unnoticed for so long.

That said, he IS a sicko who deserves a lot more time that he got.

Posted by: Lachlan | Nov 11, 2006 10:37:41 PM

Ditto - Where were the parents?! All the more so because you are a father of a 12-year old daughter, you can say: Where were they?
It doesn't excuse his actions, but there is a bigger picture here that cannot be ignored.
What are we parents willing to ignore?

Posted by: sarahb | Nov 12, 2006 12:16:41 AM

There is absolutely a bigger problem here. When I was kid a I couldn't even sneak Seventeen magazines into my room, forget about a man under my bed!

Posted by: Essie | Nov 12, 2006 2:02:52 AM

Oh, come on David. Find your inner Lamont supporter. Surely revenge won't help the girl and her family heal and move forward. And while we may disapprove of the man's behavior, the story completely neglets the root cause of his illness. Isn't it time we moved beyond such primitive ideas as reward and punishment? Why can't we start asking how we can help the girl and help the man? {/sarcasm}

I generally (and with much enthusiasm) favor the death penalty only for murder, but on my scale of evil, he should be hit by a truck.

Posted by: Doctor Bean | Nov 12, 2006 4:07:47 AM

The parents should be punished just as much as the predator should be. They created a situation in which their daughter was susceptible and they were obviously so negligent that their daughter could be molested for months in their own home without them noticing.

Posted by: Fern | Nov 12, 2006 4:42:16 AM

Enough to make you inside curl up. Truly sickening stuff.. The parents should certainly be held accountable and this man should not be allowed to continue to breath.

Posted by: Jewish Blogmeister | Nov 12, 2006 4:47:29 AM

I agree with the other comments above.
How could the parents, especially the mother not have known??
I know that there would be no chance of anyone hiding in one of my daughter's rooms! How could they, I am always in there tidying up!

Posted by: Baleboosteh | Nov 12, 2006 5:21:00 AM

OK, obviously that guy is a sicko, etc.

To address a different point, however, people are asking how it is that the parents couldn't have noticed him in their daughter's room. My theory is that the article is leaving a lot of details out. As in, he may have spent his nights in the room, but sneaked out early, before the parents had the chance to come into the room. And if you consider the possibility of both parents working and being gone most of the day, such a scenario is quite plausible. Should they be held accountable for his presence? Well, only if you think of how foreseeable such a thing was in the first place. For instance, if you're consistently negligent in that you knowingly leave a young child on the street or don't feed them, it's quite foreseeable that the child may get molested/kidnapped or starve to death. In which case, it's very reasonable to consider parents liable. In this situation, however, much deception obviously took place. Should the parents have been more careful and visited the kid's room more often? Of course. And they may have, but the pedophile was hiding under the bed. Since you don't usually expect a criminal to be hiding in your child's room, there's no good reason for you to look carefully under the bed when you visit the room. All I'm saying is that I'm not sure that the parents could be brought to task in court, since this incident, while very horrible, is very extreme, and thus not reasonably foreseeable.

Posted by: Irina | Nov 12, 2006 5:39:21 AM

Just horrifying. I'm sure to have nightmares tonight. Sorry to sound like an echo but seriously how could the parents not know?! I have two daughters (the oldest is 11) and I still check on them a couple of times a night to make sure they are OK.

The guy should fry, of course, but I'd keep an eye on the parents as well.

Posted by: Shifra | Nov 12, 2006 6:01:00 AM

Two years. And I thought the Israeli justice system was bad...

As to where the parents were, this scumbag obviously succeeded in both hiding himself very well and manipulating his victim into not showing givaway signs very well. And while it may seem completely incomprehensible that he could have got away with it,
unfortunately, parents do not posess infared radar to either prevent child abuse or consider the possibility that a paedophile might be living under the bed. (Although at least this incident will ensure that parents will be more vigilant) Rest assured that the parents are probably going to be beating themselves up for the rest of their lives, there are no words to describe just how much damage something like this can do to a family. And, similarly horrific incidents happen within Jewish and Israeli families too, I am sorry to mention.

David- I'm personally all for a small guillotine.

Posted by: PP | Nov 12, 2006 8:52:06 AM

I think that in addition to a logo for the tear-jerkers you need a scary face for the nightmarish posts! And this is from a mother who only has boys...

Posted by: westbankmama | Nov 12, 2006 1:16:45 PM

Um, at the risk of sounding like a broken record.....where were the parents and how come they never noticed ANY sign of their daughter being molested?

That said, let me add a caveat about the death penalty--California used to have the death penalty for rape. Know what we got? A lot of dead rape victims--if she's dead, she can't swear out a complaint, testify in court or identify the rapist.

What we have instead is a determinate and indeterminate sentencing scheme with no limits (unlike most crimes, which have built in time limitations)--so under the determinate scheme, the guy could get 8 years in prison for every night he raped her; under the indeterminate scheme, if he has prior violent sexual assault convictions, he goes for 25-to-life and must serve 85% of that time.

British and Israeli sentencing are both ridiculously light for serious crimes.

Posted by: aliyah06 | Nov 12, 2006 2:10:27 PM

Judy... There's a reason the sun set on the British Empire you know... :-)

Ben David... I think they were busy debating issues related to the Israeli Supreme court. Oh c'mon, you know I had to get a dig in there.

Lachlan... Of course one wonders about the parents... but this guy set his plans in motion well outside the influence of the parents.

sarahb... You know what? There is no comparison between what this animal did to that girl and the extent to which her parents were out of touch. One is criminal and the other is just bad parenting.

Essie... I have to say I am getting more and more alarmed at how everyone is fixating on the parent's role in this. That animal sought the girl out in public and gained her confidence long before he ever came into the house. Never underestimate a child's ability to deceive his/her parents.

Doctor Bean... Too fast and clean.

Fern... I happen to be a big fan of the way you think/write and have even looked up a thing or two you've published (the anti-Gun Control piece you co-authored was wonderful), but we have to part ways here. Looking at the enormity of the damage that was done to this little girl it makes me wonder how you can put the parents on the same level of culpability. Not knowing much about the home life of this family, you and I can only surmise to what extent the parents enabled the predator. It might be that their home was so large and the patterns of family interaction were so predictable that an outsider could remain undetected for long periods of time. That the young girl had a willing co-conspirator in her younger sister meant that she had an extra set of eyes and ears to help protect her secret. Unlike cigarettes, pot or booze, abuse doesn't always leave obvious signs. Under the best of circumstances a twelve year old girl is in the throws of chemical changes that make her at best a mystery to her parents... and at worst, an adversary. Lastly, her parents did not create this situation... the predator did. The parents are co-victims in this... obviously to a much lesser extent than the girl... but their lives have been shattered as well. I hope that your otherwise sharp analytical mind simply took a short coffee break when you penned your comment.

Jewish Blogmeister... The parents are almost certainly going to be punishing themselves for the rest of their lives. the perp is the one who should feel some real pain. the only consolation to such a short sentence is that such a clean-cut looking young man will find his two+ years in prison to be an object lesson in the evils of rape.

Baleboosteh... As I've said to others here, 12 is an age where young women are pulling away from their parents... especially from their mothers. Their bodies are writing checks that their minds and emotions are not nearly mature enough to cash.

Irina... Nice to see another legal mind weigh in.

Shifra... 11 and 12 are two very different kids. Tell me again in a year how well you know your kid.

PP... As I told Doctor Bean on his suggestion: Too fast and clean.

westbankmama... What, like a little MP3 file that launches as the page loads saying [stage whisper] "The calls are coming from inside the house!"

Aliyah06... OK, I see that everyone wants to string the parents up with the rapist. OK, have your way. But I don't trust the penal system to keep sex offenders locked up. Jail is to rehabilitate and IMHO guys like this are damaged goods and beyond rehabilitation. They are predators who will cut a swath through the population until they are dead. I say kill them.

Posted by: treppenwitz | Nov 12, 2006 5:31:02 PM

I read once that in parts of Scandinavia, centuries ago, the punishment for raping a child was death by slow fire.

Who knows ... maybe even that is too good for this creep.

Posted by: Rahel | Nov 12, 2006 7:10:32 PM

I agree with the others too about the parents and although the child was exploited, I would disagree on calling for the death penalty for this crime.

That I would hold for a pedophile or child molester who took and abuse the child against their will.

Posted by: jaime | Nov 12, 2006 9:39:26 PM

Rahel... Like with a spit up his a$$ and rotating in front of a low flame? A human shwarma???

Jaime... It is moot to talk about a 12 year being abused against her will. In the eyes of the law she doesn't have the ability to form consent... so any abuse is against her will.

Posted by: treppenwitz | Nov 12, 2006 9:54:06 PM

David, I think they used a cage ... but then, it's been a long time since I saw the reference so I may not remember some of the details correctly.

(Your method sounds more appropriate in this case, I must say.)

Posted by: Rahel | Nov 12, 2006 11:31:46 PM

Give me a butter knife, some iodine and a small hammer and about two weeks alone with this subhuman.

Posted by: Jack | Nov 13, 2006 3:43:01 AM

Sorry, but I'm not willing to let the parents entirely off the hook. No matter what preparations he made "outside the parents influence" he still had to come and go- and that means noise and potential visibility during the day. I'm curious how he escaped the neighbors' attention as well.

And let's take another tack- I'm willing to bet there were significant changes to the daughter's behavior- and the parents would have to be braindead not to see it.

My personal feeling, since we don't know the whole story, is that there is a high level of family dysfunction that allowed this situation to occur.

Posted by: Lachlan | Nov 13, 2006 5:36:24 AM

I didn't make myself clear....felony probation conditions coupled with limited JAIL is for rehabilitation.

STATE PRISON for 25-90 years is to take them off the streets until they die or are too old to reoffend. You'll get no argument from me about 'rehabilitating' sexual predators--they have the highest 'recidivist rate' in the penal system and are, in effect, uncurable. Some states have enacted Sexually Violent Predator laws (which are being battled on constitutional grounds in California) which allow a civil commitment to a state prison mental health unit on the grounds that the predator's criminal record, his specific acts, his psychiatric file all indicate, and his doctors agree, that he is incurable and will reoffend.

The direction I meant to go in on the parents (and failed, trading glibness for clarity) wasn't that the parents should be punished; but they have another daughter and have proven themselves woefully inadequate at supervision so Child Protective Services (or its local equivalent) needs to go in and take a hard look and give the parents some options: parenting classes, better oversight of one's teens and an assigned social worker to monitor the household OR if that's too much trouble (and I've witnessed parents who refuse ANY intervention) the Court takes their other child and places her in a foster home.

There are some strong hints here that we're not hearing something crucial....the parents claim to have been COMPLETELY unaware of what was going on AND the younger sister helped maintain a lie that put her sibling in danger and had so little trust or empathy with her own parents that she did not feel she could confide in them AND the older girl took solace in an exploitative relationship and preferred to run away with her rapist than stay home....something's very wrong in that house.

Posted by: aliyah06 | Nov 13, 2006 1:22:15 PM

Just as an FYI -

This Family Watchdog site is linked to the National Sex Offenders Registry – put in your address and see the names, faces, addresses and crimes of your neighbors who are registered sex offenders.

http://www12.familywatchdog.us/

Posted by: jaime | Nov 13, 2006 3:04:34 PM

Sorry - the address is

http://www.familywatchdog.us

Posted by: jaime | Nov 13, 2006 3:07:40 PM

aliyah06 has it right.

The first time I heard the Susan Smith story, I told someone I worked with that the mom had done it. (If you don't know the story, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Susan_Smith
or
http://www.crimelibrary.com/notorious_murders/famous/smith/index_1.html )

In this case, I totally agree there is more wrong here than just this beyond-disgusting pervert's actions and story.

I'd be willing to bet that if Children's Services or whatever passes for such in the UK starts investigating the family, the other daughter will be removed to some safe place, and the parents (probably the dad) will be locked up too. And probably the mom for complicity.

Posted by: Iris | Nov 13, 2006 4:54:26 PM

OK, I rarely comment twice, but I have to get my word in again. First, a caveat. I'm not a caveat, so I guess I can't really relate to the article on the same level than parents can. I am outraged and horrified, but only on a general human level. Having said that, I am a little concerned with the way most commenters are reacting to the role of the parents in the story. For one thing, it's true, we really DON'T know all the circumstances. Is it right for us to judge a family who went through a tragedy based on incomplete information from an article? Not that I haven't done that before, but I think that in general it's not a good idea. It's neither productive, nor fair to people in the article. Secondly, to reply to a few more specific comments, even if it did turn out that the parents were negligent in that instant, I don't think government interference is necessarily a good solution. The foster home system, for instance, is not necessarily a better place to be for a child than his family, unless that family is actually abusive. There is no indication of domestic abuse in the article, for all the gripe about their parental skills. Secondly, government intereference often does prove even more traumatic for the child than what happened beforehand. In this instance, with a pedophile who did what he did, do you really think the child in question would benefit from strangers in the house, constantly harassing the parents, and threatening to break up the home? For all our outrage about the lack of care POSSIBLY exercised by the parents, if we throw every parent who hasn't been "careful enough" in the face of an unpredictable tragedy, I think we'll have so many parentless children on our hands that there'll be no one to raise them. And as for equating the guilt of the parents with the guilt of the pedophile, I think it's completely ridiculous. Yes, they had duty to care for their children... But they didn't have a duty to be prophets or crime prevention units. They should do their best under the circumstances, but I think it's up to the law enforcement system to act as investigators whenever potential outside crime is involved. *By the way, my opinion would have been somewhat different, if the pedophile was someone from within the family or a very close friend.

Posted by: Irina | Nov 13, 2006 11:55:43 PM

Meant to say, I'm not a "parent".

Posted by: Irina | Nov 13, 2006 11:57:22 PM

Irina,

In a million years I'd never mistake you for a caveat. ;)

Posted by: Jack | Nov 14, 2006 9:05:20 PM

I can't believe this guy got off with only 2 years! While it does seem pretty astounding that the parents wouldn't know he was sleeping there and eating their food for three months, not to mention that both their daughters would go along with having a strange man in the house - they can be faulted for not being good or attentive parents, but I don't see how they could - or should- be held accountable for his very sickening actions. Some parents are not as involved or aware as others, I guess....

Posted by: mcaryeh | Nov 28, 2006 4:43:34 AM

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