Over a year after the 1999 disappearance of ten-year-old Adam Herrman first came to the attention of police, they have reassured the public that they’re still plugging away at the little boy’s disappearance and probable murder.
[Butler County Attorney Jan] Satterfield says her goal is to have the case to a grand jury by this time next year. Since this is such a complex case, she’d like jurors to help determine whether there’s enough evidence to charge Herrman’s adoptive parents… If a grand jury makes an indictment, the case would go directly to trial.
I only hope that will be the case. The fact that no one even realized this kid was missing for close to a decade is horrible enough. Justice delayed is still justice, and I can’t think of anyone who needs it more. If nothing else, they can get Adam’s adoptive parents for fraud, for accepting benefits for him when he was no longer in their care. My rough estimate is they took about $60,000 in state benefits under false pretenses. But I believe that’s the least of their crimes.
Adam’s case reminds me very much of Peter Kema‘s — another case that remains officially unsolved even though everybody knows what happened to him and who did it.
I really hope the prosecutors can make a case beyond a reasonable doubt to a jury that Adam is dead and that his adoptive parents are responsible. But unless they find a body or one of them cuts a deal, I’m not sure they can make a case for murder because as far as I can tell, there is no physical evidence of that. The only thing they have them on is fraud since they still collected state benefits for him long after he went missing.
If they do get convicted of murder, then I’m hoping their conviction isn’t overturned on appeal. Common sense is telling me that they killed him, but legally, I’m not sure they can prove it.
They don’t necessarily need a body or physical evidence — I’ve seen convictions without either. They just need strong enough circumstances.
All they can prove is that he has been gone for ten years and that they illegally collected state funds that were supposed to have been for his care. They cannot prove that he didn’t run away, or murder.
I think they killed him and probably most of the jury will as well. But legally, they cannot prove murder. Perhaps I am flashing back to the OJ Simpson trial, but juries can get swayed by a good defense attorney.
Do you think the Hermanns can afford a good defense attorney? Almost no one can afford a private lawyer for a murder trial.
Look at the Jami Scherer case. They proved her husband Steven killed her, with no body, no witnesses, no confession and not an iota of physical evidence.
Sometimes I feel like it’s so easy to abuse and kill a child in this society.
I am blown away by this case. I read a statement by an “aunt” who said that Adam stared alot and it creeped her out. He was probably hoping the bitch would reach out to help him in some way as an adult should. Well, needless to say I hope that stare from that child keeps her awake at night for the rest of her life. And surely they could charge them not only for the money but also not being responsible for his welfare by not reporting his disappearance, being as though they were his legal guardians. Wouldn’t that alone be 1st degree neglect? I have a 10 year old son, and most kids that age still want to please their parents. That kid was so helpless but yet old enough to understand the mental torment. I am sure those sadistic bastards will get whats coming to them. You can’t do wrong and get good results. They will never hurt Adam again. And remember, we all get what we give, they have much to fear jail or not.
I think if they charged the Herrmans with child abuse/neglect now, it might potentially become a double jeopardy issue if they decide later on to charge them with murder, and that’s why they haven’t faced additional charges. I am confident they WILL face more charges in the future.