Fight For What's RIGHT
Even If You're Fighting a LOSING Battle ....
“Several months later in another attempt to
reclaim his missing belongings, my son subpoenaed his accuser
to court. He appeared before a Magistrate Judge, along with several eyewitnesses, which included (2)
deputies who were there at their own free will to speak on his behalf.
Before he could plead his case, the Judge dismissed the deputies, stating that
they had better things to do.... and that isn't the worst part. Something is seriously wrong with our justice system.”
Officer! My son has a name, and it's NOT "Boy!"
I still have a hard
time believing some of the events that have transpired since this nightmare
began and the unfair and disrespectful treatment my family received from law
enforcement, the courts, and facebook members in our own hometown. Some
of you are probably wondering if my son ever reclaimed his belongings.
The answer to that is YES and NO. He received some of his belongings back, but with little or no cooperation from the
stepmother, it was not a simple process, even with a court order. It
also involved numerous and repeated escorted visits to the residence by
multiple law enforcement officers.... with
the same court order in hand each time they returned before she finally agreed to release some of the
items to him. Her lack of cooperation not only had a debilitating effect
on my entire family, but also for the numerous law enforcement officers
who wasted a lot of valuable time and resources attempting to serve
and enforce the court order. Repeated visits to the residence
became so frustrating for some of his deputies that the Sheriff genially volunteered
to speak on our behalf if the burglary charges against my husband and son ever
went to trial. As you can see below, my husband and son, who I believe were maliciously set up and arrested in retaliation, are the "Defendants." The alleged "Victim" is the
"stepmother;" the same individual who made the false claims, the
same individual who continued to unlawfully obtain my son's property
for her own use, and the same individual who repeatedly refused to
comply with this court order. Anyone,
including a child should be able to easily evaluate this entire situation
and understand what's really going on here, recognize the true victims and
identify the true victimizer!
since so much time had passed by the time she decided to cooperate to some degree, some of his possessions were returned damaged
and the rest is still missing, including a prized guitar. There
were (2) court appearances that stretched out over a period of several months;
one as a failed attempt to get the missing items back on a theft by conversion grievance, and another court appearance that was
totally unrelated to the retrieval of his belongings. Most all of his Xbox
and movie cases, 21 to be exact, were returned to him EMPTY with no discs. (See the proof in the picture below). This individual would later admit to a JUDGE
in MAGISTRATE COURT that she had taken the game and movie discs out of their cases,
(surrendering ONLY the empty cases to my son), placing the discs in a garbage
bag, and then dumping them off at her ex-mother in law's home who swore under oath on my son's behalf that
she never saw them. Why would
anyone remove the discs from their protective cases, toss them in a
garbage bag, take the discs to another location, and return ONLY the empty
cases? The garbage bag of discs, along with other items are now missing. We don't know what
happened to them after that, but I have my suspicions.
Oh, but it only gets worse. Having my husband and son arrested on false burglary charges and presumably discarding my son's property apparently wasn't enough for this individual; because what she did afterwards that led to taking her to court AGAIN was so shocking and offensive, it resulted in serving her with a "Good Behavior Peace Warrant." I had never heard of such a warrant until this happened, but it’s sworn testimony against a person whose conduct justifies the belief that the safety, peace, or property of another person is in danger of being injured or disturbed. Aside from the burglary accusations, there were other false and disgusting accusations made against my son on facebook and by word of mouth that could have jeopardized his visitation rights with his son. To protect the privacy of all parties involved, I won't disclose the specific details as to why serving this warrant was necessary, but the reason why was virtually unforgivable. It's something I cannot fathom a person doing to another human being, and I'll leave it at that.
This picture is being used for demonstration purposes only and is not the actual guitar that belonged to my son. His guitar has not been returned to him and is still missing. It was given to him as a Christmas present at the age of 13 and has sentimental value. It is my understanding that when the stepmother was questioned about its whereabouts, her response was, "I don't know anything about a guitar."
We desperately tried to put our faith into the justice system in
hopes that the Magistrate Judge would make an impartial ruling in court regarding my son's property, especially after 2 sheriff
deputies volunteered to speak on his behalf about their knowledge and
eyewitness accounts of the situation, but we were once again
victimized. Never in a million years did we foresee that the Judge would
NOT allow those deputies to serve as witnesses on my son's behalf, dismissing
them before he could plead his case, and in the end ruling that
he didn't meet the burden of proof. In
my opinion, the burden of proof was demonstrated when this individual admitted in court that she had placed most of my son's belongings in a garbage
bag that mysteriously disappeared. This is practically an admission of guilt, but the Judge still ruled that there wasn’t enough evidence that his
property had been unlawfully withheld and later discarded. The Judge basically told my son that he should have done a better job in
keeping up with his belongings. Case dismissed! There other things that happened in court and
shortly thereafter that appeared to be suspicious and biased.
Unfortunately, my family doesn't know the right people or belong to the right
clique to prove it.
My son had been robbed of his personal property with no just cause and was seemingly set up and arrested for attempting to take possession of that property by an officer who I felt refused to make any effort whatsoever to mediate a peaceful resolution to the conflict. This issue could have been resolved that day within a matter of minutes if this officer had only utilized his power of influence in a positive way, branding himself as a shining example of a mentor. Instead, he barked out commands about a court order from a Magistrate Judge.... a court order that is not worth the paper it’s written on. The following is a paraphrased statement that came straight from the mouth of another law enforcement officer from the same precinct regarding the occupants of a residence and their personal property. "If a person has been living at the home of another person and personal property has been left behind, the property owner is required by law to protect that individual's possessions. Therefore, you must be very careful as to what you discard, even something as insignificant as a toothbrush." If this statement is lawfully true, then why was this procedure not followed involving my son's personal property?
Here's a word of advice. If you ever take
someone to Magistrate court on a "Theft by Conversion" grievance,
forget about obtaining a copy of the Judge's official ruling for your records
if you plan to appeal the decision in Superior Court. When we asked for a
copy, we were shockingly informed that the Judge doesn't make
an "official ruling" unless it results in the arrest of the person
who was served the grievance. It's like starting all over. Where is
the justice? In hindsight, we should've let it go from the start and
allowed this person to keep our son's belongings if she didn't want to give
them back for whatever reason. All I can say is that I hope she wants or
needs them more than we do and I pray that karma does not return the same
fate to her family someday. Now, we've not only lost thousands of dollars
stemming from the items that have never been returned and the attorney fees and court costs we incurred
from several ineffective court appearances, we've were forced to defend
ourselves from false accusations and even worse, felony
charges, for a burglary that never happened! So it's no surprise
that we felt betrayed and forsaken by the justice system after watching this
individual repeatedly violate various laws and court orders with no
repercussions as our family was being crucified. There have been a lot
of sleepless night's filled with worry and confusion as to why the rule of
law seems to apply only to certain people. Some citizens seem
to get special treatment while others get rebuked. I was convinced that
those who should be protecting our rights played a role in violating
The purpose of my actions after this happened including the
construction of this website was NOT to gain attention. It was NOT about
hurting or seeking vindication against any particular individual. Most
importantly, it was NOT about the monetary value of our son's belongings.
It was to emphasize the importance of kindness, respect, and doing what's right. If we all lived by the same principles of doing what's right,
our world would be a much better place. It was also a way to hopefully prevent something like this from happening to another family, as well as share our
side of the story of REALLY happened since we were never given that opportunity
in a court of law. After the first year had passed and we
hadn't heard anything about the case, our attorney finally scheduled a meeting with the DA.
That was when we learned that his office had not received any information
from the police department about their arrest. From that
point forward, the case went silent and stayed that way until the statute
of limitations expired on July 26, 2018, which was four years from the
date of the arrest. Obviously, someone recognized that this was not a burglary. Although we were thankful that they never pursued the
case, our lives were frozen in time for four years not knowing what would
happen. But that's not the end of it. Just because the case was never brought to trial didn't
mean that the charges were automatically dismissed. When something like this happens, it's up to YOU to
get the charges dismissed. YOU are responsible for paying an attorney to file a
motion with the court to have the charges officially dismissed, but that
only restricts it from the Division of Criminal Information database known as (DCI). In order to restrict it from
public records, your attorney will then have to file a motion with the court to seal
it from public records, which costs even more money. We are currently working with an attorney to take these expensive, yet necessary steps. It angers me to know that someone else can nearly destroy your life, but the cost to clean it up falls back on YOU.
In order to try and make something good come out of this, I want to be an outlet of encouragement and inspiration for the countless others who may have found themselves in a similar situation. When I reached out for help, I was faced with too many closed doors and too many disappointments, even through the courts. I can't count the number of times when I reached out for help and built up false hope that I had found that one empathetic person who was eager and willing to help our family fight this injustice, only to have that hope crushed. I felt alone. I still feel alone. I'm not saying this to earn pity, but it seems like I've always had to fight my way through life just for the right to survive in this world. I often feel like I'm fighting this battle alone and I no longer have the strength to continue this fight all by myself. This experience has emotionally damaged me. The stress and anxiety that this situation has caused was so intense, at times.... death would have been better, and I don't want anyone else to feel the same way. If I can help one person through my family's experience, our pain and suffering won't be all in vain. We still have a long road ahead of us before we are fully able to overcome this nightmare, but I want to take this opportunity to thank those who have supported us, defended us, and believed in us. Right now, my primary goal is to work toward clearing their names. Truth by itself does not change lives when it is spoken. It only changes lives when it is heard, understood, and acted upon. Please review the next few pages on this website and help me support a change in legislation to help protect the innocent. Not everyone who is arrested is guilty.
Please don't say to someone, "Let me know if there is anything I can do to help," unless you mean it. It’s often a disingenuous phrase that many people say by habit without realizing it. Instead, ask yourself what you would want others to do for you if you were in the same situation.
The next two sections of this website are extremely important since it holds valuable information that could possibly prevent this from happening to others. But first, I want to switch gears for a moment and share some encouraging, yet heart-rending information about my husband's annual Drive-Thru Christmas Light display, by which he has assembled and maintained solely on his own for the past 30+ years and is an event that many people look forward to each year.
Aside from his volunteer work in the Boy Scouts of America, his annual Christmas light project has always been one of the most important aspects in his life. He once told me that it was a way to give back to the community without expecting anything in return. Throughout the years, he has spent countless hours of his own time, as well as his own money, to make sure this event happens on time. This involves giving up his weekends for several months, working all day for several days in a row and sometimes throughout the night, especially during the week of Thanksgiving. During this time it wouldn't be unusual to see him working on his lights around 3 or 4 in the morning if you happen to drive by the house during those hours. Several years ago, he worked by himself almost 48 hours straight, with few breaks and no sleep to ensure that everything was up and running by Thanksgiving night, even though he was sick with bronchitis. He even once postponed a major surgery until after the holidays to ensure that he would be physically able to work on his lights. This is proof of his dedication to something he loves. One of the things that he cherishes the most is receiving letters and notes from people, especially from children, letting him know how much they enjoy seeing the lights each year. A lot of people don't know this, but he has kept every single letter and note he has received and has documented this information in a notebook.
After our family struggled over what seemed to be one of the worst afflictions a person could experience aside from death, my husband seriously considered relinquishing this project on a permanent basis. He has health problems that has gradually slowed down his pace and sometimes makes it difficult to complete this annual event in a timely manner. Sadly, after my husband and son were arrested for something they would NEVER do under any circumstance whatsoever, he found himself struggling emotionally as well as physically. His motivation and energy virtually died. Nevertheless, he had the support of family, friends, and several compassionate citizens who cheerfully and willingly volunteered their time to help with the project in 2014. He even received help with wiring problems and manual labor from two Georgia Power affiliates from the service organization,“The Citizens of Georgia Power.” Although he greatly appreciated and accepted any help that was offered, it still didn’t bring back the person we all knew. He often said, "My heart's not in it right now."
This event not only brings enjoyment to so many people in the community, it also benefits youth development organizations such as The Boy Scouts of America. For the past several years Boy Scout Troop 21, where my husband serves as the Scout Master, has held what is known as "Scout Donation Night," where all of the boys in the Troop stand outside for several hours in full uniform, passing out candy canes to visitors and taking donations to raise money for summer camp. He wanted to take the financial burden off of the parents, so 100% of the proceeds went into the Scout fund and paid the fees for every boy in the Troop to attend summer camp at no expense to the parents. Holding onto the important reasons why he offers this event to the public, year after year is what ultimately changed his mind about terminating the project and kept him going. For now.....
If you look forward to this annual tradition and would like to see it continue for many years to come, please send my husband your encouraging words and keep our family in your thoughts and prayers
that we are able keep the project going since He
is still struggling emotionally and is no longer physically able to work on it
alone. Please pray for peace, closure, and justice for our family.
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