Tag Archives: faith
***This Press Release went out to all the major news outlets in Michigan this past November. Robert Mol was a write-in candidate and long-shot to beat this incumbent, corrupt judge because people just didn’t know about him. The news outlets largely ignores this but we will be persistent until the media covers this! Please share this in support of helping those of us who have suffered at the hands of Judge Engle and others in Ottawa County Family Court.***
Nov. 3, 2016
Contact: Gina Fischer
Domestic violence survivors file Judicial Tenure Commission complaints against Judge Kent Engle
Group of women endorse write-in candidate Robert Mol
(OTTAWA COUNTY, Mich.) – A group of several women have filed or are in the process of filing Judicial Tenure Commission complaints against Judge Kent Engle.
These protective parents have evidence that Engle has not followed Michigan child abuse and custody laws, putting children and their mothers in harms’ way. These women have been working with a non-profit organization called Wings for Justice (www.wingsforjustice.com) and are beginning to share their stories publicly in order to help others who are suffering through the same injustices.
There is evidence that Judge Engle has accepted $5,000 from an abusive father, has said on the record that he doesn’t need to follow contract law, has thrown out evidence of domestic violence and put children back in the homes of documented violent abusers. These children and domestic violence survivors need to be protected by the law and not violated further with the help of Judge Engle.
The women are endorsing write-in challenger Robert Mol in the Nov. 8 election. Upon meeting Mol, these women can see that he understands firsthand Engle’s misconduct and wants to bring change and restore law and order by putting the best interests of children first.
“Judge Engle needs to be held accountable for not following the law and endangering our children,” said Gina Fischer, of Portage, formerly of West Olive. “Throwing out evidence from police and doctor’s reports of domestic violence and sending children into an abusive situation is against the law. Robert Mol cares for children and understands the laws that are supposed to govern family court.”
The group includes:
• Gina Fischer, of Portage, formerly of West Olive, tried to stop her ex-husband from drinking and driving with her children during a winter storm warning. He then filed parenting time denial complaints and an investigation was launched. A drug test was falsified and accepted as evidence by Judge Engle. The children’s father lives with a woman who lost custody in two separate cases of her own four children due to felony child neglect, yet Gina’s children are still required to go to their home. Engle signed subpoenas but did not hold her ex-husband in contempt for not producing his financial records. Later it was found in court documents that the Judge Engle accepted an extra $5,000 more than what he said on the record that her ex-husband paid. Judge Engle also lowered child support so her ex-husband could start his own business, which is not allowable by the law. Gina’s ex-husband now only pays sporadically, if at all.
• Wendi Miller, of California, formerly of Holland, was wrongfully jailed for 90 days for protecting her daughter after being sexually abused by her father. The forensic evidence of the abuse was quashed by the court and her children were given to their abuser for the last six years, only seeing their mother two days each month. Her case was sealed to the public. Judge Engle previously recused himself from her case because he knows her personally. In June 2016, after Wendi went public with her story, Engle put himself back on her case and indicated he will have her arrested for $1,200 of back child support, even though she had recently lost her job. Engle refuses to allow her case to leave Michigan even though Michigan has no legal jurisdiction over the case because neither parent lives here anymore. Because of this, Wendi can’t bring a motion before the court in Michigan to get her kids back because Michigan has lost jurisdiction over the case. However, Engle illegally refuses to let the case be moved to the states that would have jurisdiction over it – California and Colorado, where the children and parents reside.
• Lana Baar, of Jenison, lost her children when Judge Engle signed an ex parte order to remove her children to give extended parenting time with her abusive ex-husband while her judge was on vacation. She had a PPO against him and stacks of medical reports from DeVos Children’s Hospital and Pine Rest detailing the abuse that her children had suffered at the hands of their father. In order to remove a child without a hearing, strict criteria must be met, none of which was followed before removing her children from a loving mother. The children have been in this abusive situation for over a year now with no plan for reunification put in place.
• Ann Maguire, of Holland, was wrongfully jailed for 10 days when her 15 and 17 year old children refused to ride in their father’s car to parenting time. They insisted on driving themselves because of their father’s violent and suicidal history as detailed in 10 police reports and 4 PPO’s. The father then lost parenting rights after admitting to the violence on the stand during a custody hearing. Since Engle has taken over her case in 2015, she has been brought back to court approximately 15 times in the last year by her wealthy ex-husband to remove spousal support after a 29 year marriage where she put him through medical school. Judge Engle has fined her and made her pay for services that were contracted by the court, saying that he doesn’t have to follow contract law. He admits on the record to talking about her case with her brother, Judge Jon VanAllsburg, who has been estranged from Ann and his other siblings for years.
• Brandi Walker, of Allendale, has been receiving help from the Center for Women in Transition for over two years after being attacked while pregnant by her boyfriend. She lived in hiding for four months and is still receiving help from CWIT because she is threatened each time she sees her abuser and is stalked at her home and her place of employment. She has close to 1000 photos of bruises and marks on her baby and herself, some taken by an Ottawa County Deputy, doctors’ reports, police reports, and has had personal protection orders against her abuser. Despite all of this evidence, Judge Engle has said she failed to prove he abused her and her son. Just this month, he has ordered a Friend of the Court investigation including psychological testing against the mother and ordered her to pay for this investigation.
Ann Maguire filed her JTC complaint this week, and it is attached below. The others are in the process of filing complaints. All of these women are willing to share all of their documentation with reporters who are interested in reporting the truth about Judge Engle.
As a woman, I’m all for equal rights and especially equal pay for equal work. I’m also all for any girl becoming anything she wants outside of traditional roles – if it’s something she’s good at. But I’m also all for embracing traditional gender roles if you so choose. Finding a chivalrous man in the current dating cesspool is extremely sexy to me and sure to get you a second date.
I have winced on many occasions at some of the feminist posts and videos. It leaves me wondering what it must feel like as a guy to hear such things. My boys are learning to open doors for their mom and others, giving their seat to an older person while in waiting rooms, schlep heavy groceries, move furniture, and even on special occasions help mom with her coat. Call me old fashioned but I want to raise respectful and chivalrous men. So does this mom…
This morning, I attempted to start my day centered. As I pried myself from my warm and toasty sack, I was determined to not let stress take over. Turn on the news…Nope! Turn off the news. Ebola freakings are not centering. Ahhhh. Alarm for 5 minute warning of Hooligan’s bus…not centering. Out! Out! Out! Love you, bye! One kid sent out the door. Ahhhh. Lay down for a few minutes before rousing Shenanigan and his morning litany of scientific questions fired at me at the same rate as rounds from an ouzie. I love that he thinks I know the answers to all of these things and I’m sure one day he may be peeved when he finds out most of my answers are made up. Not staying centered. Breathe in. Breathe out. I shall do yoga as soon as he leaves! This will cause some major centering. Wait. Why isn’t he up yet? Is he still too sick that he will be here all day long uncentering me? Get up, Shenanigan. GET UP, Shenanigan. GET UP!!!! Good. He looks fine. Here. Have some zija, let me douse you with essential oils, here’s your shakeology protein shake (please don’t tell him I threw a handful of spinach in there! He can’t tell if he doesn’t see it going in the vitamix!) That oughta do it. 5 minute bus warning alarm…5 minutes to centering. Oh wait. He forgot the <whydidntyoupackitlastnight> book upstairs and the <whocaresgetonthebus> item he wants to share with the teacher…there goes the bus. And…carline. Definitely losing control of this centered morning plan of mine. <heavy sigh>
When I get home, I will gather the growing laundry summit and take it to the laundromat. Dumb washer not washing anyway. Then I’ll get centered. <waittilafterschoolsoyouhavemorehandstoschelplaundry> I’ll diffuse some frankincense to help me get centered. Crap. My new diffuser is not diffusing. Still have the box. Let’s get this wrapped up and ready to send back. Put frankinsense on my wrists and inhale. <thisfrankinsenseworkedforbabyJesusitwillworkformetoo> Almost time to get centered. Find free yoga site. Yes. I’ll take the 19 minute 52 second version today as my tookus still hurts from my first <again> run Saturday. Ahhhh. Namaste. Reaching up, breathe in. Hands to prayer, exhale out. <whatisnamasteanyway> Pause. Look up namaste.
<whatisnamaskar> Look up namaskar.
Indian? <ihateindia> Am I doing some crazy Indian ritual and unknowingly praying to Indian gods like a church lady told me 10 years ago? Am I hurting God’s feelings doing yoga? Maybe I should get centered another way. <iknewsomeonewhowenttoindiaandhewentofftherails> See? Yoga is Indian and India is bad! I should go back to bed. <itprobablywasntindiasfault> The Indian people ARE really cute in their Kurtas and Saris. They probably aren’t all bad. And I know the God I pray to and He centers me. <maybethatswhoyoushouldfocuson> Play. Namaste. Inhale in. Exhale out. I’ll get to my art history paper after this plank…kerplunk. <planksaredumb> And then 3 online quizzes after paper. Warrior Pose. <illmakethosequizzesmybeeotch> Is it time for baby pose yet? Inhale in. Exhale out. Corpse pose. <irockthispose> One more time. Inhale in. Exhale out. Namaste. Namaste beeotch! Centered…ish.
So we moved about 2 1/2 years ago about an hour away from my hometown to marry the man I loved. While, in hindsight, there were red flags that I chose to ignore, I loved this man with all of my heart, more so than anything I’d ever felt for my ex-husband. He moved us here, called my boys his kids, said he loved us and offered me the world. I was his “miracle”, he said, our second chance at a happy life together. Anyone who’s been through a divorce knows that there’s a period of crazy that you will go through and nothing but time will cure “the shiz” as I call it. Well, this man was NOT through his shiz no matter how much I wanted to believe that he was. I also had some of my shiz dredged up when losing my home and moving, picking at old scabs and starting the bleeding again. Each time the scab gets picked, you learn better how to control the bleeding but for the first year, you just need a lot of grace.
After we were here about 2 months, he began to wig out about really small things. His anxiety levels were so much higher than I had seen from an hour away. Living around the corner from him and spending more time together as a family, I could see the red flags more and more. And now, I’ve moved my boys to a new school and they are developing new friends, full of hope of having a complete family unit with new siblings they adored. What now?
In the meantime, my van was on it’s last leg. I had been making jokes for months about how I was going to pick out a lovely tree for it’s ultimate demise if I couldn’t make it last until my taxes came back in the spring. Funny, right? Well, not so much when a deer ran in front of me, grazed my hood and took off into the marshy woods on a foggy morning. I felt the wheels beneath me rise up and prepared for the roll. But there was a small tree that I grazed the passenger side that miraculously put the tires back on the ground. The guy who saw it happen stopped and helped call for help. I do not remember shaking so much in my life. He called my love for me since I couldn’t seem to function. My love sent his mother instead. A few short days later, after acting strangely, he decided to go to the crash site with his son and had come to the conclusion that I had crashed my van on purpose. Nevermind the blood on the hood of the van from the deer and that the police and insurance adjuster found no fraud. This would change how he felt about me as a person, I was told, and he needed time to himself.
We were devastated. But, I put on my best gracefulMess smile, changed my relationship status on FB, and tried to keep us together. The boys were sobbing, and I mean SOBBING, every day. Watching their pain was worse than losing my love. We went back and forth for a couple of months, getting back together, breaking up…until I finally couldn’t take it anymore. I began working full time for the first time in 10 years and also going to school 2 nights a week with about 10 more hours of homework. I took all of this on because he had committed to helping me. But now, my boys were reeling and I was getting sicker by the day. I knew I was exhausted but who wouldn’t be with all of this going on. I just kept putting one foot in front of the other. My period lasted for 7 weeks straight with very heavy hemorrhaging and I became severely anemic. According to livestrong.com, a normal hemoglobin level for a non-pregnant adult woman is between 12.1 and 15.1 g/dL…mine was at 6.1. In an adult, a normal blood iron level is 60 to 170 mcg/dl. On average, women have slightly lower iron levels…however, mine was 8! Red and white blood counts were crazy off the charts. I was passing out 1-2 times per day, jaundiced and almost transparent pale, and was hospitalized for two days. (A special thanks to my bestie who came and cleaned my house quickly because she knew my mom was coming to take care of the boys and would FREAK at the mess in my condo! My mom still cleaned when she got here!) Thankfully the transfusions worked eventually, but not before a barrage of tests, including for lupus and MS. Thankfully, I’ve learned to control all of the things that got me into such a terrible state and I’m much healthier and stronger now.
During this time, this man never checked on me, never checked on the boys, and never even said goodbye. He offered no explanation to his family or our church lifegroup other than, “they’re busy and can’t make it today.” When a few of his family members found out, they tried to talk to him but he said he wouldn’t talk about it. They had been asking him to get help for years but he refused. When I questioned him, he offered no reasons why other than, “I want to be alone! I have free will and I’m choosing sin!”…as I was reading his newly renewed match.com profile.
A few short months later, he began dating another woman. She has two little redhead boys and drives the same kind of car as I do (the one I replaced the van I apparently crashed on-purpose with). She happens to go to my sister-in-law’s church in a town about 45 minutes from here…such irony. I heard he was getting married and thought maybe he already had until this morning…
This morning, we went to both services at church because we were on for kids worship both services. While taking my time between services, his mother came up to me and asked if I remembered her. (I didn’t know that she began attending my church!) Of course, I told her, letting her know that I was doing well and updated her on some of the things in my life. She said that her son is getting married today. Today! On the anniversary of my divorce! Fantastic. She went on to give details of how she will help get his kids (the kids I loved and thought would be my own) to the church and other details I really didn’t care to know.
With my gracefulMess smile on my face, I politely listened as if it didn’t hurt my heart all over again. Looking at the faces of my boys as they recognized her and then heard her tell of his wedding, I could see their pain begin to resurface. We had a good boo-hoo session when we got home and talked through our hurts. Today has picked at a scab that I thought had scarred over. It had not. So I bleed a little bit again today, but I will not allow it to last very long. Instead I will let the bleeding spill through my fingers onto the keyboard and tell a little more of my story while he gets married this afternoon. This, in hopes that my story can somehow encourage another. Though your heart may be broken, you will heal. There will be setbacks. There will be crazy. There will be more shiz to work through. But the Lord, He loves us and has never let us go. I don’t think he’s gonna stop today.
My flesh and my heart may fail,
but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. –Psalm 73:26
My posts will be a little sporadic as I approach another hearing with Friend of the Court on March 14. This was postponed from January 13, which was postponed from September 6, which was postponed from June, which was pushed back from April after a hearing in February of 2013 where I let the court know my ex-husband tried to drive with my children while severely intoxicated, yet again. (during a winter storm warning, no less!) Court is the gift that keeps on giving. The more I post, the more you will hear me preach about putting your big-girl pants on and mediate the heck out of your divorce! Do NOT play in the courts/lawyers sandbox if at all possible! I, unfortunately do not have this luxury as there is a third party driving this process and drugs and alcohol are a factor. When dealing with an addict, you may as well be negotiating with a toddler. But if you have two relatively sane, although wounded, adults who both love their children dearly, you should be able to negotiate and realize that nobody will EVER win in these situations. (least of all the children)
So my feathers were ruffled again today upon learning the boys’ child support was lowered by $500/month…with no judges orders!!! and an upcoming hearing on this lumped in with the other issues. Not that we’ve received any child support since October anyway. But FOC made it retroactive to November, lowering his arrearage so that my ex-husband has no consequences right now. Lovely.
I just saw an upcoming movie trailer for “God’s Not Dead” and an amazing calm came over me tonight. GOD. HAS. GOT. THIS! Why are these unscrupulous people shocking me with the same behavior that they’ve shown over the last five years? Why would I expect anything more out of the people who’ve made a mockery out of the justice system, keeping the real issues away from the judges and not protecting the kids? HE will take care of us just as He has done for the last five years! He hasn’t let us drown yet! I want my faith to rise up again to where it once was and put my hope in Him! Going up against things that seem insurmountable and facing jail for protecting my children seems like it’s just too much. But it’s not for Him! It’s not. For Him.