Somehow, I knew it would come to this...I just didn't want to believe it.
4:30 AM on a Saturday morning, I was woken up from a deep slumber by my dog barking at my back door. Who would be knocking at my back door at this such an hour? It was my ex-wife with my son. Christopher had been arrested-for raping a two year old. My heart just sank to a bottomless pit.
That was last year, February 20, 2010.
The story begins with a phone call after my son got home from school. His best friend, Christopher, wanted a sleepover at my place that night. These guys had numerous sleepovers ever since the wee days of their childhood. Like two peas in a pod, they seemed like a bond in brotherliness. Anyways, I agreed to pick up Christopher at our meet up place in Milwaukee. There, my son, "my daughter and "my granddaughter" met up with Christopher and his mother. Everyone was in good spirits. Nobody had a clue what darkness lurked around the corner.
At the time, I was going through issues of my own and I wasn't up for much company so it was decided that they would spend the night at my ex-wife's place. After all, the drama had died down over there and we all felt it was safe enough for the boys' sleepover. How wrong we were...
By accounts, this is what is told to me....
My son and Christopher were playing video games in my son's bedroom when Christopher needed a controller from his backpack from the other room where my "daughter" and my "granddaughter" slept. For some reason inexcusable, Christopher had slipped my "granddaughter" away from my "daughter" and began his assault. My "daughter" had woken up to find Christopher on top of her with both their pants down. As what a concerned mother would do. she fought off Christopher with a plastic sword and then chased him out of the apartment with a knife, having my then 12 year son witnessing all this.
Maybe I was in denial. I've known Christopher since the day he was born. His mother and I were close friends since high school. My ex-wife babysat him on a constant basis while his mother worked. He was like a "son" to me-a part of the family. On the other foot, after my divorce my ex-wife and my "daughter" were known drama queens, hanging around with the wrong people. Drugs. I had my suspicions about them two. Things didn't seem right. Could it be they were looking for attention or for money? As much as I wanted to believe what happened, I just wanted the truth.
It tore me apart. The family along with it. I was in the middle of the madness, pulled apart like a game of tug-o-war. My relationship with my "daughter" was severed. Later on, Christopher's mother and I stopped talking. The case got ugly, really ugly. Even though the case made the news, I keep quiet about it, save for a few people I can trust.
By November, the DNA results can back. Indeed Christopher's DNA was found on the little girl's underwear. Sounds like an open and shut case, think again! Not only Christopher's DNA was found, TWO OTHER DNA WAS FOUND! My mouth just dropped to the floor! For some ungodly reason unknown, the persecution decided NOT to pursue the other DNA. That totally outraged me!!!! Was it a lack of evidence? A cover up? An easy way out? I'll never know the answer to this. All I know that this was a load of crap...As I later learned, the other two DNA were on the underwear (perhaps from folding clothes) while Christopher's DNA was found inside of the little girl.
From November to February 2011, the case kept getting delayed time and time again due to the defense persistently trying to find doctors that will evaluate Christopher insane. The more and more delays came and went, the more I felt Christopher was guilty.
Around this time, my relations between my "daughter" and I began to improve. Big thanks to my girlfriend. Then again as the case was moving along, my "daughter" freed herself away from the clutches of my ex-wife's drama and settled into a place of her own with her daughter's father. My daughter seems to prosper and do much better now in the drama free lifestyle than she did with my ex.
The delays in the case soon took it's toll. The defense, hoping to dog down my "daughter" and the district attorney by prolonging the case with the endless search for doctors forever, failed. After an outburst in court from my "daughter" about the delays, the process was finally sped up. By April, Christopher plead guilty. The sentencing date was set for July 11. He could face up to 60 years.
Outside the courtroom was chaotic. Words were exchanged between families as we were coming to the terms of the truth. Some family members had to be escorted out the building. No one was permitted to speak of the case till after the sentencing. That includes me blogging about it. I didn't feel like sitting in jail for contempt of court.
The case changed all of us. My son wonders why to why Christopher did this hideous act. My son barely acknowledges Christopher's existence and clams up when anyone speaks to him about it. To this day, I not sure how traumatized he is over this. He refuses counseling. My" daughter" finally saw the err of some her ways of thinking and sought to make herself a better person.
The day finally came to where justice can finally be served. Tension filled the courtroom as the police filled the place with their presence. This could get ugly, I thought. After the reading transcripts from the previous court times, the defense (including me) made statements to the court. Some these statements were teary eyed and full of emotion. The defense tried to show leniency by promoting probation only, then they tried to explain to the court that my ex-wife lied about a statement she made. (Whether it was a surprise to me or not, it didn't matter, I felt it was irrelevant it this point).
The pre-sentence investigation and an Illinois forensic psychologist suggested that community treatment would be a better option for Christopher than prison.
In a surprise move, Christopher made a statement-begging for leniency and apologized the victim's families. That fell on deaf ears for Judge Torhorst. "I simply believe you are and will continue to be a serious risk, not a minimal risk but a serious risk," he said. Christopher was sentenced to ten years in prison plus 15 years of extended supervision.
As we were corralled out the courtroom by the police, I couldn't help to wonder if justice was really served. Christopher WAS a good kid, but he what he did. There is no changing that. He got what he deserved. Somehow I can't help the feeling that he can be helped. (If that is possible) Just one question remains is to WHY?
Links for further reading...
The Journal Times 7-11-2011
The Journal Times 4-23-210
The Journal Times 4-23-2010