Isabeth Yanez

I found this article about Isabeth Yanez, who ran away from her home in Georgia last December. She was twelve. She left with her 20-year-old boyfriend, Simon Quintana Gutierrez, leaving a note asking her parents not to look for them.

The police called the case a runaway, not a kidnapping, and as a result Simon and Isabeth were able to get over the Mexican border without being stopped. They’re presumably still there today. The FBI is now investigating…too little, too late in my opinion. The NCMEC has Isabeth listed as “endangered missing.” That’s a more sensible designation.

I suppose I can understand the police’s reasoning — Isabeth clearly left because she wanted to. She wasn’t taken against he will. But for chrissake people, the kid was TWELVE. In many states, that kind of relationship would result in substantial prison time. And if they had listed her as an abduction victim, her name and Gutierrez’s would have been flagged and they would have been stopped when they tried to Mexico. But she was classified a runaway, and she wasn’t stopped, and now who knows where she’s at and if she’ll ever return. She might have a kid by now for all we know.

Call home, Isabeth, if only to say you’re alive.

Editorial about Josh Powell

I found this editorial about Josh Powell, Susan Powell‘s husband. In the wake of Josh’s father’s child porn and voyeurism arrest, Josh lost custody of his kids to Susan’s parents, Judy and Chuck Cox. At first it was just for a few days until another hearing, but at that hearing they decided to let Susan’s parents keep the boys until November 15 at least. Josh only gets supervised visitation, one day a week.

As the editorial points out, there’s a strong bias towards keeping kids with their bio-parents, and the pedophile grandfather was in jail and therefore out of the picture. The fact that in spite of this Josh still did not get the children back, says a lot for what the judge thought of him. I too found it disturbing that Josh said he would rather have his children be cared for by foster parents (that is, strangers) than live with the Coxes. That hardly sounds like a loving, unselfish father to me.

I wonder how much the children know about the situation, and what their father has told them about Susan and Susan’s parents. They’re only four and six years old now. The judge ordered both children as well as the Coxes to get counseling. That can only be a good thing. The judge also told the Coxes not to say nasty things about Josh in front of the children, but I don’t think they would have anyway. Judy and Chuck have been very cool and restrained about the investigation and Josh in spite of what they’ve been through and the way he’s behaved. They strike me as a very classy couple and the best people to take care of their grandchildren right now.

Gabriel Johnson’s mom is incompetent again

I’ve written about Gabriel Johnson‘s case before. He has been missing since December 2009, when he was seven months old. He would now be two and a half, but he’s probably dead and the police have openly said they think his mother, Elizabeth, murdered him.

Elizabeth was supposed to stand trial for kidnapping, custodial interference and child abuse, but she’s just been ruled incompetent. Again. Last summer she was found incompetent and then three months later re-examined and determined to be competent again.

This time, four out of five mental health experts said she was too screwed-up to assist her defense. This article notes that out of those four, only three thought she might eventually get her competency restored with drugs and counseling. Of course that’s what everybody wants to happen (except, perhaps, Elizabeth herself, see below), but in the meantime of course the trial will be delayed.

From this article:

Judge Paul McMurdie also ruled that there was not clear and convincing evidence that she will never be mentally fit to stand trial. McMurdie ordered her back in treatment and back into the restoration process. He requested an update on her mental health in 60 days.

Dan Raynak, Johnson’s attorney, argued that his client has not told him or any member of his defense team one fact about the case despite months and months of trying.

Raynak told the court his more than two decades as an attorney convinces him Johnson will never be able to be restored so that she can aid in her defense.

The prosecutor, and Gabriel’s father, believe Elizabeth is just playing games with everyone and it’s not that she is unable to assist her defense but that she refuses to. Elizabeth’s grandfather thinks she’s bipolar, and from her behavior I’ve read about I wonder if she might have a borderline personality. Which is not to say that she couldn’t be both bipolar and borderline at the same time. There’s a great deal of co-morbidity in mental illness — that is, people who have one diagnosed mental disorder not infrequently have more than one.

The East Valley Tribune also has a good article about this (the Johnson case that is, not mental illness), with more details.

New MP book

A Toronto crime reporter called Cal Millar has written a book called I’m Missing – Please Find Me. According to the Burlington Post, the book “contains 350 cases of people who have vanished across North America as recently as a year ago and as long as 40-plus years ago.” I’m not sure how many of these cases will be from the US and how many will be from Canada, but from another article I know Coral Hall (from Michigan) is one of the cases profiled.

I put in a purchase request at the library, and they promised to order the book. Once it appears in the catalog I’ll place a hold on it.

I also asked them to order Barbara Highton’s Missing or Murdered in Missouri, which mentions the Charley Project among the resources in the back. They said they would try to get a copy.

Missing guy from Guam

I found this article about Ben David Fieldhouse, age 49, who’s been missing from Guam for over a year. This is the first time I’d ever heard of him. I will put him on Charley and he will be my fourth case from Guam.

For Fieldhouse they’re starting to look at foul play, simply because if he disappeared from other causes like an accident, they should have found him by now. He had a bad relationship with his wife and had a pending domestic violence charge against him at the time of his disappearance, but it isn’t said whether she is a suspect or not.