Posts Tagged ‘Sexual Abuse and Assault’

Death penalty sought the murder of Shaniya Davis…

October 6, 2011 4 comments

Fayetteville, Cumberland County, North Carolina prosecutors said Wednesday that they plan to seek the death penalty against the man charged with killing a 5-year-old Fayetteville girl, Shaniya Davis almost two years ago but not against the girl’s mother.

Mario Andrette McNeill, 30, has been charged with murder, kidnapping and rape in the death of Shaniya Davis, whose body was found in a kudzu patch near the Lee-Harnett county line on Nov. 16, 2009, six days after her mother, Antoinette Nicole Davis, reported her missing from their Fayetteville home.

Authorities believe Antoinette Davis is complicit in her daughter’s death. Arrest warrants stated that she “did knowingly provide Shaniya with the intent that she be held in sexual servitude” and “did permit an act of prostitution with Shaniya.”

An autopsy determined that Shaniya died of asphyxiation and that injuries she suffered were consistent with a sexual assault. A medical examiner noted in the autopsy that investigators believe the girl was used to pay off a drug debt.

A Cumberland County grand jury indicted Antoinette Davis in July on charges of first-degree murder, indecent liberties with a child, felony child abuse, felony sexual servitude, rape of a child, sexual offense of a child by an adult offender, human trafficking and making a false police report.

She was arraigned Wednesday, and a judge set her bond on the murder charge at $2 million. Bonds totaling $1.5 million were set previously on the other charges.

McNeill, whom police have described as a friend of the family, is being held without bond at Central Prison in Raleigh.

Courtesy of WRAL

Will there ever be justice fo Shaniya Davis?  Personally, there will never be ENOUGH justice served for this precious child.

Take care and STAY SAFE!

One year later: Will there be justice for Shaniya Davis?

November 10, 2010 Comments off

Five-year-old Shaniya Davis had barely begun to live when she was raped and strangled and her body dumped on the side of a road near the Harnett-Lee county line in November 2009.

But the ramifications of her horrific death continue to reverberate in the community and in the agencies that investigated her case.

A year later, the fallout continues.

Cumberland County’s Department of Social Services, accused of not cooperating with police in the tension-filled days immediately after Shaniya’s disappearance, was the subject of an investigation sought by District Attorney Ed Grannis.

The investigation came to a close in September, and Grannis has decided not to prosecute DSS officials on charges of obstruction of justice.

But the circumstances surrounding Shaniya’s death have led to the resignation of Chet Oehme, chairman of the Social Services Board, and continue to shine a spotlight on Social Services Director Brenda Reid Jackson, who has been at the center of a firestorm of criticism.

Cumberland County commissioners are now considering replacing Oehme with one of their own in an effort to provide better oversight.

A year after Shaniya’s death, one big question remains: Can Social Services, Fayetteville police, the Board of Commissioners and the District Attorney’s Office put aside their differences and work together?

At 6:53 a.m. on Nov. 10, Antoniette Davis called Fayetteville police to say her daughter, Shaniya, was missing from her home in Sleepy Hollow Mobile Home Park.

An Amber Alert went out just after noon for Shaniya, who had last been seen wearing a blue sleep shirt and pink panties.

Davis and her 7-year-old son spent that afternoon at the police station, answering investigators’ questions.

Two days later, police released surveillance video, taken the morning Shaniya was reported missing, showing a man holding her in his arms in front of an elevator at a Sanford hotel. The video was time-stamped 6:11 a.m.

The man in the video was identified as Mario Andrette McNeill, who turned himself in to police Nov. 13 and was charged with kidnapping.

The next day, Shaniya’s mother was charged with human trafficking and prostituting her child, filing a false police report and obstructing justice.

The search continued for Shaniya as law enforcement and dozens of volunteers combed the woods and swamps in the area of southern Lee and northern Harnett counties.

The search ended about 1 p.m. Nov. 16, when Shaniya’s body was found among the thick kudzu vines that covered woods off N.C. 87 near Carolina Trace.

On Nov. 20, McNeill was charged with raping and murdering Shaniya.

Shaniya was buried in Fayetteville Memorial Cemetery on Nov. 22 after a funeral attended by nearly 2,000 people.

By then, the case had become a national story on television news channels. That’s how NBA star Shaquille O’Neal learned of Shaniya’s death. He paid for her funeral.

A week after Shaniya’s abduction, Social Services Director Brenda Reid Jackson met with homicide investigators at the District Attorney’s Office to review what her department knew about Antoniette Davis and her children.


The exact nature of the department’s relationship with Davis’ family still isn’t known. Jackson has used state privacy statutes to keep records of the case out of public view.

But one of Shaniya’s uncles, Michael Davis, told reporters that, before Shaniya’s death, the DSS investigated her mother concerning her 7-year-old son.

Shortly after Shaniya died, the co-chairman of a state task force on child fatalities said a team would be sent to Fayetteville to find out when the DSS first made contact with the family, the status of that case at the time of the killing, and whether proper procedures were followed.

Last week, almost a year later, a spokesman for the state task force said no date has been set for the beginning of that review.

Little else about how Social Services handled the case had become public, either, until Grannis held a rare news conference in September.

During the conference, Grannis said police repeatedly had to go to court to force Jackson to give up DSS records that he said eventually proved useful to the murder investigation.

Even with the court orders, Grannis said, the DSS held back records.

The first indication of that came within a day of Shaniya’s disappearance.

A police detective was told by a DSS employee dealing with Shaniya’s brother that “law enforcement is not getting everything, that they are not being told everything and that there is more to this,” Grannis said at his news conference.

After police figured out that an initial batch of records was incomplete and the county supplied a second batch, a DSS employee told a detective that she was being forced to delete all e-mails related to Shaniya’s case, Grannis said.

Grannis decided not to prosecute DSS officials for obstructing justice because, he said, the e-mails weren’t destroyed but printed out and slipped into case files before they were deleted.

That maneuver, Grannis said, was motivated by Jackson’s desire to keep the e-mails away from reporters, who might obtain them under the state public records law. Everything in DSS case files usually is considered a state secret.

Fayetteville Police Chief Tom Bergamine brought the DSS foot-dragging to the attention of Grannis.

In December, Grannis requested that the SBI look into the county’s cooperation with the murder investigation.

The SBI investigation cast a shadow over the DSS for months.

Jackson wrote Grannis in March, seeking an update on what the SBI had found. When Grannis ignored the letter, the county Social Services Board sent another one in August.

Jackson, who had been briefed on the SBI’s preliminary results by a bureau agent, believed the DSS would be cleared.

Grannis finally responded to the DSS letters in September.

Instead of exonerating the DSS, however, Grannis told Oehme, then the Social Services Board chairman, that he was dissatisfied with the SBI report. Grannis asked Sheriff Moose Butler to take a second look at the report.

Butler’s internal-affairs investigators spent less than two weeks on the case.

On Sept. 30, Grannis called his news conference at Butler’s office.

“To say we were not happy with the quality of the SBI report would be an understatement,” Grannis told reporters. “In my 40 years, I’ve never seen anything from the SBI that bothered me this much.”

Grannis, who is retiring at the end of the year, recounted how an SBI agent told his aides that Jackson said a Fayetteville police officer attempted to break into the DSS building on Ramsey Street. She later changed that account, saying a newspaper reporter had tried to break in, Grannis said.

The district attorney was skeptical. The Social Services Board later issued a statement in which Jackson “unequivocally” denied saying any such thing. “This incident never occurred,” the statement read.

On Oct. 8, the board called Jackson in for a closed-door chat. Emerging from the private meeting, the board issued a statement of support for Jackson. It noted she now is meeting regularly with Bergamine, the police chief.

A few days after the board’s statement, Oehme submitted his resignation, effective immediately.

Last week, Oehme said he wasn’t interested in talking about Shaniya’s case in any depth.

“I feel that Social Services did what they were supposed to do,” Oehme said. “And we’re just waiting for the outcome of the perpetrator and the mother.”

Shaniya’s father, Bradley Wayne Lockhart, still is angry at how DSS handled the investigation.

“I’m angry with DSS for withholding information that could have prevented all this,” Lockhart said in a telephone interview from Georgia, where he now lives.

Lockhart said no one from DSS contacted him after police searched Davis’ home in July and found drugs.

“Why couldn’t they call me and tell me they had raided the house and she (Davis) was under investigation?” Lockhart said.

He said he also was upset that Oehme referred to him as a “deadbeat” in his October resignation letter.

But Lockhart said he isn’t dwelling on his anger. Instead, he’s trying to channel it into something positive.

“We can spend most of our time finding fault and pointing fingers, but unless we find the root cause and change it, we won’t fix the problem,” he said.

Asked if DSS could have done more to prevent Shaniya’s death, Grannis replied: “I don’t think you can say that.”

He drew a parallel with the 2009 murder of Eve Carson, the UNC student-body president who was slain during a robbery in 2008. One of the men accused in Carson’s death was on parole at the time.

“I think DSS has a monumental task trying to deal with a lot of broken situations,” Grannis said. “They certainly don’t fix them all, and I don’t think the rest of us can.”

A year after Shaniya’s death, her mother and McNeill have yet to be indicted.

Antoniette Davis remains out of jail on $51,000 bail.

Davis was pregnant when she was arrested. She has since given birth, and the child has been put in foster care, a source close to the family said.

McNeill is being held at Central Prison in Raleigh for safekeeping until his trial. No date has been set.

Grannis said the case is in good hands, with a trio of proven deputy assistants to handle the prosecution.

Bergamine would not speak about Shaniya’s case or the department’s relationship with Social Services. But he did issue a statement through department spokesman Dan Grubb.

“Unfortunately,” the statement read, “Police Department personnel cannot comment regarding an ongoing investigation, but we trust and expect that the Fayetteville Police Department and the Department of Social Services will work together in a professional manner as need arises without regard to any individual case.”

In an e-mail last week, Jackson said DSS and police lawyers have begun to work together on court orders for records.

She added: “We continue to extend heartfelt sympathy to the family of Shaniya Davis and our community which was affected by this tragedy.”

Shaniya’s father has started Shaniya Speaks, a nonprofit group that works to raise awareness of sexual crimes against children.

The group’s name represents what Lockhart said he is trying to be: his daughter’s voice.

He plans to attend a memorial service, sponsored by the organization, on Nov. 16 in the parking lot of the Family Dollar store on Murchison Road.

Grannis said he hopes the case serves as a lesson about cooperation between agencies in any investigation involving a child.

“I think we saw in this case how important that can be,” Grannis said. “You would like to think that with everything that occurred in this child’s case, there will be more of an effort in that regard.”

As I and many others feel Shaniya was failed by many from Daddy, “Mommy Dearest”, knowingly family members, county offices, law enforcement, the school district to the neighbors that she was being abuse and did nothing to save her.

Still to this day I cannot fathom how her mother was allowed out on bail – the court system has already failed Shaniya and the trials haven’t even begun.

Cumberland DA, NC: DSS ‘dropped the ball’ withholding vital info in the death of Shaniya Davis

October 1, 2010 Comments off

Cumberland DA, NC: DSS ‘dropped the ball’ withholding vital info in the death of Shaniya Davis

I called this one back in my November 24, 2009 post!  “I have posted before…..many individuals, county offices, law enforcement and Shaniya’s school LEFT HER DOWN! Let alone “MOMMY DEAREST”, family members, irresponsible and ignorant friends of her mother’s and the list goes on. In my book, “they weren’t there for her and her well-being”; bottom-line.”

“There are so many red flags, warning signs, bells and whistles in this sickening, senseless loss of Shaniya from so many respects. How in the hell did this happen?; “How could things have gotten to this?” Others MUST BE HELD accountable for their failures as many failed Shaniya.

Cumberland County DSS MUST be investigated as this agency needs an overhaul just as the SBI did.

FAYETTEVILLE (WTVD) — Cumberland Co. District Attorney Ed Grannis blasted the North Carolina Department of Social Services Thursday – saying the agency withheld vital information in the Shaniya Davis case.

Davis, 5, was taken from her Fayetteville home in November 2009. Mario Andrette McNeill has been charged with kidnapping, rape and murder. He was seen on a hotel surveillance video with Davis.

The girl’s mother, Antoinette Davis, is charged with child abuse involving prostitution.

At a news conference Thursday afternoon, Grannis said problems started the day Davis was reported missing when DSS left detectives waiting hours for assistance.

“It was critically important that DSS cooperate in every way to save the life of this child, it does not appear that occurred,” said Grannis.

Eventually, he said it took two court orders to force DSS to handover missing documents that were not included in an initial report to the DA’s office.

Grannis also expressed his disappointment with the State Bureau of Investigation who he said referred to DSS’s lack of cooperation as a misunderstanding – even after interviews with DSS staffers revealed high ranking supervisors told agents on the case to print emails and then delete them to prevent the media from accessing details in their investigation of the Davis Family.

“DSS staff was told to delete emails pertaining to this case, and to not email anymore information,” said Grannis.

A DSS supervisor also alleged a Fayetteville police officer tried to break into DSS offices to obtain information, but later recanted, saying it was a local reporter. DSS has never sought charges against that reporter.

ABC11 asked whether this was a case of criminal negligence. Grannis said because the emails were printed out, there’s no proof they were destroyed.

He said he will not seek criminal indictments, and believes because Davis’s kidnapping, rape, and murder became a high profile case, DSS reacted in such a way to protect its image.

However, he says DSS dropped the ball and failed to protect the 5-year-old.

ABC11 (Raleigh) also asked if the DA’s Office had taken its grievances to the Governor. Grannis said no, insisting that a better spirit of cooperation between police, prosecutors and DSS will result from this incident.

Grannis has enlisted the help of the Cumberland Co Sheriff’s Office to review the DSS handling of the case in order to have “a set of fresh eyes” on the matter.

Respectfully submitted via WTVD-TV/DT

Cumberland DA wants deeper probe of DSS into the death of Shaniya Davis

September 30, 2010 2 comments

Cumberland DA wants deeper probe of DSS into the death of Shaniya Davis

As one year is approaching since the death of Shaniya Davis many close to the case or following updates wonder why Antoinette Davis and Mario McNeill have failed to meet their sentence yet.  June 14, 2010 would have marked Shaniya’s 6th birthday.

It is not known if Antoinette Davis decided to plea her case to avoid a trial.  It is not known if Mario McNeill has entered his trial out of the preliminary process.  And if there is anything we have learned from past murder trials it is this – some trials could take over a year or two in seeking a sentence.

Question is, how far would the prosecution go in solidifying their case against both Antoinette Davis and Mario McNeill?  As far and as long as it takes.

Cumberland County District Attorney Ed Grannis said Wednesday that he’s dissatisfied with a state investigation into the county’s social services department after a 5-year-old girl was kidnapped, raped and killed last year.

“I do not feel that the crucial issues involved in this investigation have been sufficiently answered,” Grannis said in a letter to the State Bureau of Investigation. “I am, therefore, requesting the assistance of the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office to assist me in resolving remaining questions which I have concerning the Cumberland County Department of Social Services.”

Grannis and Fayetteville Police Chief Tom Bergamine requested the SBI investigation last December after questions were raised about the county’s contact with the family of Shaniya Davis before her disappearance. The SBI turned its findings over to Grannis last Friday.

Shaniya was reported missing from her Fayetteville home on Nov. 10. Her body was found in a patch of kudzu off a rural road near the Lee-Harnett County line six days later.

An autopsy determined that she died of asphyxiation and that injuries she suffered were consistent with a sexual assault. A medical examiner noted in the autopsy that investigators believe the girl was used to pay off a drug debt.

Mario Andrette McNeill, 29, of 2613 Pine Springs Drive, has been charged with first-degree murder, first-degree rape of a child and first-degree kidnapping in the case. Police have characterized him as a family acquaintance.

Shaniya’s mother, Antoinette Nicole Davis, 25, has been charged with human trafficking, felony child abuse–prostitution, filing a false police report and obstructing a police investigation. Arrest warrants state that Davis “did knowingly provide Shaniya with the intent that she be held in sexual servitude” and “did permit an act of prostitution with Shaniya.”

The Cumberland County Department of Social Services previously looked at Davis with regard to her 7-year-old son, not Shaniya, according to her uncle, Michael Davis. The case was closed, and Antoinette Davis was able to retain custody of the boy, her uncle said.

Grannis and Bergamine expressed concerns that DSS case workers were withholding information in the case.

DSS Director Brenda Jackson has previously declined to comment on the agency’s involvement with the family, citing the investigation into the death and confidentiality rules for child welfare cases.

Respectfully submitted via Capitol Broadcasting Company

Days Go By…

December 31, 2009 Comments off

Shock, pain, emotional distress,
This happens to other people,
to other families, not ours….

Reality sets in,
Hate, dispair, and anger take over,
How could this happen, why did this happen?

Days go by,
Acceptance and strength are surfacing,
Drive and determination take over…

Passing along what we have learned becomes important,
It becomes the focus of each day,
To help others through where we have been…

We made it as the days have gone by,
As the years have gone by, we made it,
It’s forever with us, but it is now strength…

Days go by and it no longer rules,
We rule, we have taken our lives back,
A lot has changed as days go by…..

You took enough, you get no more…
Our lives are different, but our lives are good,
We took our lives back as days go by….

Now our purpose is to help others take theirs back,
You took enough, you get no more,
We are getting stronger as days go by…..

Our voices are coming together as one,
Can you hear us? You will,
As days go by….

Our voice is becoming stronger,
Louder, as days go by,
Our voice is to be heard….

The fear is gone,
We stand as one, strong and unwavering,
We are firm on our feet….

We are one voice, one voice that will no longer be silenced,
One voice that becomes stronger and louder,
As days go by……..

Cathy Parsons Gipson

Project Safe Girls…Stopping Violence Against Females

December 29, 2009 Comments off

Safety first:  a mantra Bethany Corbin now lives by to the letter.

After a personal experience with domestic violence, Corbin, a sophomore international studies and economic major at UNC, threw herself into educating other young girls.  Her program, Project Safe Girls, teaches girls ages 5-23 about domestic violence, sexual assault (rape, date rape, and acquaintance rape), abduction, human trafficking, stalking, healthy relationships and general personal safety and ultimately how one can protect and defend herself mentally, emotionally and physically.

Project Safe Girls will kick off training through the Chapel Hill-Carrboro YMCA’s middle school afterschool program and is expanding rapidly through other schools, throughout the nation and is striving to make the program a safety prevention course requirement in all school systems.

“I want Project Safe Girls to be widely known throughout the US, said Anny Jacoby, founder and President of The Realistic Female Self-Defense Company, of which Project Safe Girls is an official division.  “Project Safe Girls will take on its own form and it will shine as it is a much needed program for all communities.”

Jacoby has worked closely with Corbin to develop the program since Corbin approached the company.  As sister organizations, both programs teach women essentially the same techniques, mentally and physically, geared to specific age groups.  Corbin’s project gears specifically to girls ages 5-23 enrolled in school from kindergarten to college, whereas The Realistic Female Self-Defense Company teaches females of all ages.

The first step of the course lies in the awareness portion of safety, as awareness is the first step to any form of personal safety/self-defense.  Instructors teach characteristics of unhealthy vs. healthy relationships/situations.  Red flags and warning signs are significant signals of potential or existing abuse.  Power and Control is the dominate factor which every form of abuse centers around.

Lessons in de-escalation are taught – how to diffuse a potential dangerous/violent situation in an attempt to warn off a physical altercation.  De-escalation techniques range from eye contact and a confident yet non-threatening demeanor to talking in low tones and maintaining a safe distance between the persons.

“De-Escalation starts with non-verbal behaviors,” Jacoby said.  “Techniques consist of your demeanor, your presence, your body language.  But the only way that an individual obtains the confidence and knowledge is by studying and understanding how an assailant thinks, how you need to be thinking, and then knowing how you can defend yourself verbally and ultimately non-verbally if needed.”

The lessons in the non-physical aspects of personal safety/self-defense form the backbone of the Corbin’s and Jacoby’s programs.

“We promote violence prevention, raising awareness and the skills to reduce susceptibility to violence,” Jacoby said.  “The way that you promote prevention is through education.”

Physical personal safety/self-defense training is a major part of the female’s safety equation.  Females are taught how men/assailants think, vulnerable body areas other than the groin – which men expect a female to target – and how to use knowledge as an advantage.  “Fighting back is not about staying in the “ring” going ten rounds,” Jacoby said.  “We fight males with knowledge, not with strength; and knowledge is a powerful tool.  But you must know what your tools (mentally and physically) are and how to effectively use them.”

Shaniya Davis – SBI to probe possible DSS cover-up in girl’s death

December 8, 2009 1 comment

Fayetteville, N.C. — Cumberland County District Attorney Ed Grannis and Fayetteville Police Chief Tom Bergamine have asked the State Bureau of Investigation to look into whether social workers have turned over all of their records in the death of 5-year-old Shaniya Nicole Davis.

The girl was reported missing from her Fayetteville home on Nov. 10. Her body was found in a patch of kudzu off a rural road near the Lee-Harnett County line six days later.

She died of asphyxiation, according to preliminary autopsy results.

Mario Andrette McNeill, 29, of 2613 Pine Springs Drive, has been charged with first-degree murder, first-degree rape of a child and first-degree kidnapping in the case. Police have characterized him as a family acquaintance.

Shaniya’s mother, Antoinette Nicole Davis, 25, has been charged with human trafficking, felony child abuse–prostitution, filing a false police report and obstructing a police investigation. Arrest warrants state that Davis “did knowingly provide Shaniya with the intent that she be held in sexual servitude” and “did permit an act of prostitution with Shaniya.”

McNeill and Antoinette Davis are being held in state prisons in Raleigh for their own protection, authorities said.

The Cumberland County Department of Social Services previously looked at Davis with regard to her 7-year-old son, not Shaniya, according to her uncle, Michael Davis. The case was closed, and Antoinette Davis was able to retain custody of the boy, her uncle said.

DSS Director Brenda Jackson has previously declined to comment on the agency’s involvement with the Davis family, citing the investigation into Shaniya’s death as well as confidentiality rules for child welfare cases.

Grannis sent a letter Friday to Cumberland County Manager James Martin to notify him that he and Bergamine have requested an SBI investigation of DSS.

“Chief Bergamine has requested the SBI’s assistance to determine if Fayetteville police have received complete and accurate records from Cumberland County DSS regarding this case,” Grannis wrote. “Based upon the information provided to me and my senior staff by the Fayetteville Police Department concerning these issues, I share their concern, and I have requested the assistance of the SBI to assist us in this regard.”

In a statement released by Cumberland County spokeswoman Sally Shutt, Jackson said she would ensure that her office cooperates with authorities to resolve the matter.

Neither Jackson nor Grannis returned phone calls Monday seeking further comment.

Shaniya’s father, Bradley Lockhart, declined to comment. The girl lived with him and his sister until early October, when he allowed her to go live with Antoinette Davis.

Authorities with the state Child Fatality Task Force already are looking into any DSS contact with the Davis family. The task force studies all child deaths in North Carolina to make recommendations to legislators on changes to state laws and administrative polices to prevent future deaths.

The View’s Whoopi Goldberg on Polanski ‘It Wasn’t Rape Rape’ – What The Hell Whoopi?!

September 30, 2009 Comments off

The Motherhood Manifesto


So, adult sex forced on a minor is just rape and not rape rape? I didn’t know that there was a differentiating definition on the term rape. This is news to me! So, glad you enlightened me, because I didn’t want to go through life being angry at male perps for rape rape when I should only be angry at them for rape. After all, I wouldn’t want to sound too harsh against the bastard. I rolled my eyes when you said that. Where was your head?

What got me the most pissed off is when you said, “Would I want my 14 year old having sex with somebody. Not necessarily.” Not “NECESSARILY”? What the hell?!?! I am a mother and I can assure you that if any adult ever even thought of having sex with my children at 14 years old….there would be hell to pay! So, my answer is, “OH HELL NO!!!!!!!”

To top it off, you use culture differences to play down that perverted criminal’s choice to rape that poor girl! How sick! In any culture it’s a violation of a minor’s human rights to be raped…PERIOD! Hell Whoopi, what if a white man from a culture that deemed it okay to drug and force a black person to be a prisoner in his home, so that he can use this black person as a slave? Would his cultural difference justify or minimize his criminal act against that black person?

Not to mention, try telling that poor little girl….”Honey, I know that you feel violated and what’s been done to you is wrong. But, you need to learn to accept that this as not “necessarily” a bad thing. Because, in some cultures this is perfectly normal and accepted.” Whoopi, you really messed up here and I am seriously believing now that you are messed up! Totally messed up!

I used to watch your show and I used to think you had at least your basic moral values and had a pretty straight on head with controversial issues. Now, I don’t think I could ever watch The View ever again without wanting to push my entire body through the screen just so I can get in your face and tell you just how disgustingly sick I think of you now. You have definitely more than dissapointed me. You shocked the hell out of me.

Take care and STAY SAFE!
Anny Jacoby
A Success Survivor
“Raising female awareness and skills to reduce susceptibility in response to violence.”

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September 27, 2009 Comments off


Jordan Ward, 13 years old was sexually assaulted in BROAD DAYLIGHT in the middle of an amusement park. Jordan was able to get away and credits a special class at school for teaching her how to FIGHT BACK!

A trip in late July a Georgia amusement park should have produced many happy memories for almost a dozen young people from a Cullman church youth group. But what happened that day was a nightmare for one 13-year-old girl.

Eighth-grader Jordan Ward says that she was sitting on a park bench waiting for her friends to finish a ride when a stranger walked directly up to her and assaulted her. She explained what happened, “All of the sudden a man just ran up to me and started touching me in inappropriate places. I was just like “oh my gosh, what is happening?” And right then I just slapped him! I just REACTED!”

According to the police, what Jordan did next may have saved her life and prevented the attack from being even more traumatic. “I just slapped him across the face as hard as I could to get him off of me. And he let go of me and I ran as fast as I could. I don’t think I’ve ever run that hard.”

Jordan’s experience has reminded all of us who teach women/female Personal Safety/Self-Defense why we do what we do. And, why so many instructor’s in our industry remain steadfast with the mission and commitment to stay focused.

We all might have different systems/styles that we teach but most importantly we all teach gals how to defend themselves effectively, be safe, get away, break away and flee to get help. The warrior mentality of stun and run/fight and flight. It’s not about going ten rounds with an attacker. Hand-to-hand combat (S.P.E.A.R. system) is taught how to attack an attacker’s weaknesses and to take advantage of them. Many things are taught in classes even ground fighting.

Empowering a female of any age to say “NO” is a critical step in preventing sexual assault and abuse. 90% of escaping an attacker is mental. All of us empower females to let them know that, this is her body; her temple. She has one body, mind and spirit and ultimately it is up to her to defend and protect herself at all times.

Hearing Jordan’s story and knowing what she learned was effective and knowing that we do make a difference – well, that’s what it’s all about.

Jordan said, “You don’t really think something like this will ever happen to you because I didn’t, but it did.” And, Jordan was prepared and thank God for her P.E. Coach LeeAnn Evans who worked at bringing personal safety/self-defense to Cullman County.

We commend you Coach Evans, Officer Cindy Rohrscheib and Cullman County Deputy Jennifer Chaffin for bringing self-defense to the girls of Cullman Middle School. Training that they will have for the rest of their lives.

Take care and STAY SAFE!
Anny Jacoby
A Success Survivor
“Raising female awareness and skills to reduce susceptibility in response to violence.”

If you are in an abusive relationship, you need a plan.
Moving Out, Moving On; authored by Susan Murphy-Milano will guide you through the necessary steps of ending a relationship safely.
You can purchase your copy HERE.

Feathers_by_eclecticdesign (2)For scheduling training, appearances or speaking engagements for Anny, please contact ImaginePublicity.
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