Justice for Caiden Henry, a 9 month old beaten to death in Spokane, his murderer is free
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What I am about to share is a tragic incident that occurred in Spokane, Washington that exposed areas of improvement needed in multiple state systems. In February of 2017 Caiden James Henry was beaten to death at the tender age of nine months old. This horrendous act occurred while in the care of his provider that was approved by the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services, Working Connections Childcare, Friends and Family program. A program that currently has a non existing training or professional development requirement or standard other than passing a background check. Duly, this program is also lacking a Behavioral Health screening of its participants.
Unfortunately, for Caiden his DNA was found in the home of the provider who carried his deceased body around all day concealing his wrong doing from his mother. The accused has also paid bail and as of October 26, 2017, Judge Cooney through Spokane Superior court ordered that the perpetrator while on bail to live free with his own children who were present during the crime. I beg to question the safety of his own children and the integrity of their testimony if needed in the future.
Judges in the state of Washington are currently allowed freedom to set bail amounts at whatever they choose which has exposed racial disparities. As an example an African American 16 year old accused of beating an elderly man in Spokane to death had his bail set at 3 million dollars and reduced to 1 million dollars a few years ago. The white male accused of fatally beating 9 month old African American baby Caiden Henry had his bail was set at $500,000.00 and reduced to $250,000.00 allowing him to pay only $25,000.00 and walk away, both decisions were made by some of the same judges in this case.
Spokane has had several children under age five who have been murdered or nearly murdered since January of 2017. Spokane's child abuse rates are higher than the state average and national per capital average according to KREM 2 News. Many of the victims of homicide and abuse in Spokane have their perpetrator currently living free or have served minimal sentences. Since the start of this petition two more children have been admitted to Sacred Heart hospital in the Intensive Care Unit as victims of abuse one with a pancreas split in half at age 5 and the other a 17 month old girl with bleeding from the brain as of November 15, 2017. The children of Spokane, the state of Washington, and our nation need to be kept safe and standard legislation and laws created that provide the following:
1. Bail Reform: The removing of bail as an option for anyone pending trial with enough evidence for an arrest, until the trial ends. This includes any homicide, abuse or neglect that leads to the death or near death experience of a child.
2. Equitable standards for Judges when assigning bail amounts, including the implementation of a predetermined bail scale that is standard across the state to ensure our systems are providing equitable justice.
3. Additional required trainings for participants or anyone providing care under the Washington State DSHS Working Connections Child Care, Friends and Family Caregiver program to include but not limited to the 30 hour Department of Early Learning Child Care Basics Course for Family in home centers.
4. Increased income limits for working poor families in need of quality care. In almost all of the cases since January of 2017 with the exception of Caiden occurred by the hand of a live in boyfriend.
Our children need to be our business both locally and nationally. Children should be expected to live long healthy lives. We must do better as a community as a state and nation to hold accountable individuals who's actions impede upon the safety of our most vulnerable populations. We need to hold perpetrators accountable for senseless crimes against children by removing the option for paying for release through the current bail system.
Thank you for agreeing and signing this petitition any assistance you can provide regarding these matters of great importance is greatly appreciated. We demand Justice for Caiden and all the innocent children that have fallen victim to abuse, homicide, and neglect. Caiden cried for help and no one that could save him heard his plea, please sign and share to ensure that his death is not in vain and his voice is carried to the people that can change policy and law.
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