On Monday June 25th, 2018 my 10-year-old son was violently assaulted and kidnapped by a 5'10, 220 lb, 36 year old Caucasian women. This occurred inside our gated Irvine community by a women living less than 100 ft from our home.
Details - While my son played soccer outside with two of his friends, the offender approached them and asked if she could play soccer with them. Although the kids didn't feel comfortable with her playing because they thought it was strange, rather than be rude (their opinion) they allowed her to play. The ball got kicked into the trash bin area and my son went to get the ball. The offender followed behind him. He climbed into the trash bin to get the ball and as he was climbing out of the trash bin the offender grabbed him as if to help him. He told the offender, "it's okay I got it", but she held onto him despite his asking her not to. When his feet hit the ground the offender put him into a choke-hold. The offender tightened her grip pushing upwards making it hard for my son to breathe. The offender told him that he was in trouble, calling him a bitch and telling him that he was a slave. The offender pulled my son while in that same strong choke-hold 30 ft from the trash bin to her car. During this time his two brave friends ran to get help. While next to her car she took her arm off him to get something out of her car. At this time my son was so terrified that he had the reverse reaction - rather than run he froze. He wanted to run away but he couldn't move he said, "my legs felt frozen, as if they were stuck I couldn't move and I stayed there while she got something out her car". The offender resumed the choke-hold and pulled my son another 10 ft to the stairs leading to her apartment. Once they reached the bottom of the stairs she release the hold and said, "We're going to go to my house for a little bit". Seconds later a good samaritan confronted the offender and my son was saved.
What Happened? I pressed charges and the offender was arrested and an emergency protective order was issued by judge that day. The DA's office filed 2 misdemeanor charges against offender and they include PC 273(a)a Child Abuse and Endangerment and 236 False Imprisonment. She had her bail arraignment hearing, she was appointed a public defender, plead Not Guilty and a pretrial date was set for 7/6 her bail was reduced from 100,000 down to 5,000. She bailed out of jail 2 days later and returned home to our apartment community on Thursday June 28th, 2018. I was devastated and completely outraged, baffled by the judicial system. Why wasn't she charged with a felony? Why wasn't she charged with the kidnapping charges filled by the Irvine Police Department? Why was her bail reduced? Why was she allowed bail? There are eyewitnesses, this happened in broad daylight, where is the justice? I'm currently looking for lawyers now who can represent us at no charge, so that we can fight for the justice my son deserves.
Our Backstory - The victim is my biological nephew. After taking him in 2015 he has decided to call me mom instead of auntie. Henceforth the reason why I refer to him as my son because he is my son. My son's parents were teenage parents. My brother (his dad) has been a revolving door in the judicial system since he was 15-years-old, my son's mother has been addicted to opioids since she was 17-years-old. I have been my son's legally adoptive mother for the past three years. This horrific criminal act has been severely detrimental to my son. This should NEVER happen to a child, especially this child. From the age of 3-7 years-old my son endured unspeakable emotional and physical abuse from his caretaker. Abuse such as being told he was worthless, dumb, unwanted, beaten with objects such as metal spatula, meat tenderizer, days without food, etc. I believe wholeheartedly that this incident triggered my son's Post Traumatic stress (PST) which is why he didn't run or fight back. He went back to that 3-year-old little boy who believed not fighting back would make the pain stop faster.
Concerning Facts: When I told the apartment community relations manager what happened the next morning she said, "I'm so sorry this happen to you, but I'm not surprised by who the person is. We've had a number of issues with her and the management team is currently taking action, maybe your situation will help speed up the process". It was shocking to learn that this woman had previously displayed disturbing behavior. Behavior so pungent that choking a minor, dragging him through parking lot while choking him and attempting to take him to her home isn't shocking. I find it extremely disconcerting that someone of her caliber was allowed to reside within our apartment community. Was the writing already on the wall? I cannot help but wonder if negligence is a factor. Could this incident possibly have been prevented if swifter actions and measures to evict this woman had taken place sooner? After 7 long days of silence, I finally received a response back from the the corporate headquarters; they offered to transfer me into an apartment unit a little further from the offender within the same apartment complex, and $500 moving voucher. Unfortunately, this isn't sustainable long-term, as the offender knows exactly where we live. As mentioned before due to my son's previous trauma his being assaulted while playing outside within our apartment complex has triggered his previous trauma imposing Post Traumatic Stress (PST) and has impaired his level of functioning. It's in my son's best interest to relocate so that he can rebuild his sense of security at home, outside to aid him recovery from this traumatic experience.
Why I/we need your help? I need the help financially allow my son and I the freedom to focus solely on recovery. With the monies we will be able to move out of the current apartment complex to a neighboring apartment complex in order to not disrupt my son's current connections within the city. This will help give us peace of mind. I don’t want to be behind the same gate as this woman. My son is fearful of his life and no longer wants to play outside because she is here and she knows where we live. I'm not sleeping, my sons not sleeping, he's stressed, I'm stressed and we're both in a constant state of worry. We can literally go outside at any moment and we could see the woman. I fear for our safety. At any time this woman could retaliate against my son and I. I live on the first floor she could literally climb over onto my balcony into my home and kill us in the middle of the night. Sounds extreme? No! I have no idea to her capabilities and or her mental stability. There is a court order retraining order in place, but how many times has a restraining order failed the victims. It takes seconds for something tragic to happen, and minutes for the police to arrive. How many times have we seen a scenario play out in in the news in which people are severely hurt ? We all think of ways in our head how it could have been prevented if the right precautions and actions were taken to ensure the victims safety? That's what I want to do for my son and I. I want to prevent any further harm.
Will you help us make this a reality?
We want to thank you in advance for your heart to help us. It truly does take a Village and we thank you for being a part of our Village.
With Love & Appreciation,
Unique and Eric
P.O Box 2602, Costa Mesa, CA 92628