Yet another disabled person has died, allegedly at the hands of his parents. You can read the news report here . There is an option to view the video of the story, which has more details. I am trying to find out more and will write again if I can.
According to the news report his parents are charged with arson and manslaughter for alleging locking in 19 year old Christopher Degroot, setting fire to the apt. and leaving him there to die. The report said the charge was not first degree murder because it hadn’t been proved that the fire was set intentionally.
This is worse than the case I blogged about previously where the mother sedated her son and put a bag over his head. Neighbors heard Christopher screaming during the fire and tried to rescue him but dead bolts and screwed shut windows made it impossible. If I understand it right (given missing part of it because of Billy Ray's noise) it happened on Mother's Day and he didn't die until Friday, he must have suffered a lot before he died.
According to Christopher’s sister in the interview last night but not shown in the video, her parents kept Christopher locked up to protect them from him and to protect him from others in the community that did not understand him. She alleged the fire was from the furnace. That doesn’t justify leaving him alone.
I can’t help but wonder what was Christopher trying to communicate to his parents if his behavior was that dangerous. Surely, there were other answers than leaving him locked up alone whether or not they set the fire and killed him.
Somehow our recent discussions about awareness seems more important. If we can get the message out to the public that families need help and to parents that there is a better way than killing their kids, maybe no more disabled persons will be killed.
Until next time,
Peggy Lou Morgan
Parenting Your Complex Child Yahoo Group