I would like to introduce you to Justen.
Original story 11-30-15
Justen was born a “normal” baby, no health issues at all on February 22nd, 1996. At age of 8 months old on October 22nd, 1996, his birth father Howard Davis got angry because Justen was crying. Mr. Davis tried to suffocate Justen, but birth mom got him away from him, then went to work. When she returned from work, Justen was non responsive, so a couple hours later she decided to take him to the ER. The doctors noted that Justen had finger marks around his neck from being choked, bruises on his head, neck and cheek, scratches on his face and old bruises on his head and limbs. In addition there was evidence of tearing brain and nerve tissue. Toxicology also came back to show that Justen had adult levels of Nyquil in his system “to help him sleep”. During exam and x-rays, it was found Justen had been abused his whole 8 months of life.
While in the hospital for his injuries Justen’s had 3 different surgeries. Justen had bones that were healing throughout his whole body, even had a spiral break on his leg when he arrived at the hospital. The first surgery was the placement to a shunt in his head to relieve the swelling of his brain and drain the blood off it. The second and third surgeries were on his eyes to get the blood from behind the eyes.
The first day we were able to go see Justen was amazing . We walked in and saw this little guy hooked up to tubes and wires. He had a swollen head. Justen even lost the ability to suck. We stayed with him for about 3 hours. We made plans with the nurses to come back the next day to learn how to do the feeding tube. The hospital is in Detroit which is about 45 minutes away from our house. About half way home we received a call from one of his nurses telling us right after we left Justen started to suck on his pacifier! I guess Justen just knew his new mommy and daddy where going to love him and protect him.
So we finally were able to bring him home. He cried all the way home. Any movement was hard for him. We think it scared him since he could no longer see.
He didn’t sleep good at all for about the 1st year. Once we got him into the Early On class he started to do much better. At this time the birth moms rights had not been terminated . So the judge ordered the bm to go to observe his schooling. The very first time she came, she sat in the rocking chair and fell asleep!
Since being released from the hospital Justen has had a total of 13 surgeries. Justen is now confined to a wheelchair, visually impaired, has a shunt, and a balcofen pump. Justen’s life was taken away from him and he will never be the typically 19 year old boy. That doesn’t stop Justen or his family from living life to the fullest. Justen has daily struggles that he should never have had but his smile, laugh and spirit make his family very happy.
Howard Thomas Davis received 5-15 years in prison for first degree child abuse. Mr. Davis only served 41 months in prison before being released. He is currently out of jail and living his life.
According to Justen’s mom, ” even though there have been many sleepless nights , many bad days, I would not give Justen up for anything. He has the best sense of humor. He is so loving. He is a true blessing to our whole family.”
Not much has changed I guess. Justen is still happy all the time. He still goes to school, but only has 2 years left. He says 2 words, mama and Dora! He loves Dora! The link to Justen’s page is below. There you can read more and follow his journey. He is now 24 years old.
I would like to introduce you to Logan.
This is Logan’s story. Logan was born 6 weeks early but didn’t let it slow him down. Until the day he was injured he was a very happy, active baby with a huge smile.
On March 30, 2003 at the age of 11 months old Logan became a victim of shaken baby syndrome while he was being babysat by member of his family (**sperm donor/biological father), Steven Rumfelt.
It was quickly determined that Logan’s injuries were due to shaken baby syndrome and over the next few days Steven gave multiple stories as to what happened with a couple of them being that he wasn’t in the room with him and just found him on the floor, another was that Logan fell down while standing and he may have shaken him to revive him, another story was that he threw him onto the couch and that he fell off and bumped his head on the table, and once the inconsistencies were pointed out he stated to the police that he did not know what all he had done to Logan because he was getting so enraged because of his crying that he claims he may have blacked out , but he did finally admit to being responsible for Logan’s injuries and that “it was possible that he shook him”, but that he wasn’t sure what all he might have done. He also stated that he had thrown Logan onto the couch and that he fell off hitting the table on the way to the floor.
Logan was left with whiplash, his eyes were for lack of a better description shaken loose, (he was shaken hard enough to sever his optic nerve, with the force causing the nerve to be massively damaged, and his retinas had severe hemorrhaging leaving him legally blind.) Additionally, he was left with 80% brain damage and loss and he also had a broken leg. The damage was described by the doctors as being equated to a ten story fall landing on your head. Logan was initially given no hope for survival and spent weeks on life support. He was given a feeding tube surgically implanted in his stomach as he was no longer able to swallow and we were allowed to bring him home from the hospital for his first birthday, which was spent in a coma, and the doctors basically told us we were bringing him home to die. It took months for Logan to emerge from the coma.
Today, Logan has a severe form of epilepsy, he is visually impaired and is considered legally blind although he has regained a little vision over the years ( he is very very very nearsighted), he has cerebral palsy, is considered receptive yet non verbal as his speech is equal to that of a baby/young toddler, but he has been tested and seems to understand many things that are said to him just fine. He is wheelchair bound, and attends a special needs school everyday. All of this is caused by his initial injury on 3-30-03.
Doctors have no explanation for how he has survived this long or how he has done as well as he has because he did not have enough brain matter left to sustain any kind of life outside of a vegetative state. He is a very happy child, has a wicked sense of humor, and like most teenage boys thinks that anything gross is hilarious. While his speech and skills are limited, he has no trouble getting his point across, and we find ways for him to be included in all activities possible. He is now 17 and lives at home with his parents, his little sister and an assorted zoo of furbabies.
Steven Rumfelt was found guilty of felony child abuse in July, 2004. He received the maximum sentence at the time of 20 years for felony child abuse due to MS not having an attempted murder charge. Steven Rumfelt entered the prison system in November of 2004 and was released on early supervised release ( parole) in August 2013 after serving less than 9 years of the 20 he was sentenced. We had state law changed and named after Logan where now child abusers get up to life (mandatory life on a 2nd offense), the law was named Logan’s Law and was signed into effect in April of 2005.
I would like to introduce you to Landon.
Landon YoojYim Thao was born n on September 21, 2012. Fully healthy with no health complications. He is the firstborn and first grandchild to his maternal grandmother. He had brought so much joy to everyone and everyone cherished him preciously. Everyone fought for a moment with him.
Landon had just turned 4 months when he suffered a traumatic brain injury due to being shaken by his biological father. He had just learned how to sit propped up, to recognize familiar faces, and crave for food other than his bottle. He could barely hold his head up. His favorite people were his maternal grandma and his auntie.
On January 25th, 2013, while being in the care of his biological father, his mother received a text while out with family, that he had fallen off the couch. His father did not seek medical help for him and left him in his crib. Hours later, his mother returned home to find him lifeless in his crib. She immediately took him to the emergency room, where he was flown to the children’s hospital an hour and a half away. His father, mother, and maternal grandmother followed by car.
He received an over 8 hour emergency surgery to relieve the pressure on his brain. The doctors checked in every few hours with no good news. The doctor said he had more chances of not surviving, and if he did, he would be a human vegetable for the rest of his life. Landon was in a coma for 6 weeks. When he opened his eyes, his mother realized that he was no longer the Landon that she had entrusted to his father. His father stuck to his story of Landon falling off the couch. The doctors had said there is no way that a fall off the couch would sustain such an injury.
The next day, law enforcement and child protective services came to the hospital and conducted interrogations with Landon’s parents separately. His father finally admitted that he had shaken Landon and threw him on the couch. His father was immediately instructed to not have any contact with Landon.
When Landon was well enough to be discharged, 2 months later, he was placed in foster care while his mother and grandmother worked with authorities to have him come home to grandma’s. Landon and his mother moved back to his grandmothers house so that he would receive all the care he needed while his father complied with authorities to have no contact and worked with CPS to gain visitation rights.
Landon’s biological father and abuser was charged with Physical Abuse of Child-Recklessly Cause Great Bodily Harm and sentenced to 6 months in jail, in which he served 5 months, and 10 years probation. There is misconception that when someone abuses their child, they immediately lose contact with their child. Landon’s parents worked with CPS for over a year so that his biological father could gain custody of him again. His abuser made the legal decision to “pause” visitations with Landon and working with CPS. He has not seen, interacted, or asked about Landon since 2014.
Landon is being fully cared for by his mother. He is diagnosed with global development delay, cortical blindness, Cerebral palsy, chronic pulmonary aspiration, cognitive disorder, myoclonic jerking, post-traumatic seizures, spastic quadriparesis, traumatic brain injury, asthma, and is wheelchair dependent. He and his mom took quarterly, or more, 1.5 hour trips to his doctors’ appointments.
Landon has had 6 surgeries to date: Craniectomy, craniotomy, vitrectomy, G-tube surgery, hip surgery, and hip surgery again to remove the metal rods that were placed in his hips. He is due for another craniotomy because the previous one had deteriorated. He takes 8 medications daily and is fully depended for his cares. Landon has been admitted to the hospital at least twice a year every year due to medical complications.
Despite his conditions, Landon is a very happy, resilient, 7 year old. He loves music and any funny noise-especially dishes clanking. His favorite person is his maternal grandma as no one from his father and abuser’s side has reached out to him in the past 6 years. He loves to cuddle with his mommy and falls asleep withing 5 minutes in her arms. He likes to taste ice cream and chocolate. He loves to use his hands and chin to explore textures. He loves going to school and being able to interact with other children. He is absolutely amused by his own snorts. He wakes up every morning laughing and talking to himself for hours. He thinks that mommy’s friends are hilarious-especially when they talk about boys. He also thinks it’s weird when his mommy visits him at school.
In his own little way, Landon has impacted everyone who has come in contact with him. People fall in love with his funny- tummy laughs or are in awe of everything that he has over come in his little years.
I would like to introduce you to Christopher.
It’s Tuesday October 11, 2011..Mommy didn’t set her alarm for work since I usually wake her up, mommy overslept and woke up really late. She finally wakes up and she tries to wake me up, but I can’t wake up. I am just barely breathing and only able to make low moaning sounds, my eyes wont open and I can’t say anything. I can’t tell her that Ian hurt me and left me lay there to suffer. Mommy shakes me and says it’s time to get up again but I still can’t get up, I end up peeing my bed, I haven’t done that in a long time . Mommy wakes Ian up and he acts like he doesn’t know whats wrong , he does’t tell her he tortured me and threw me into the wall. Mommy calls 911 and they rush me to the hospital. When I get to the hospital they call my Nanny and tell her I am hurt really bad and won’t wake up, Nanny left work and rushed to the hospital where I am laying in a bed with lots of doctors and nurses around me. The first thing they do with Nanny is take her into a small room where the Chaplin is and they tell her that I might not make it through the night and they need to rush me into surgery to stop the bleeding in my brain. Nanny is crying and tells them she needs to be with me, so they bring her to where I am. Nanny walks into the room crying and comes over to me and gives me a kiss and tells me she loves me very much and that I can’t leave her she needs me in her life. The doctors have me covered up with a sheet they uncover me and show Nanny my bruised body. Nanny cant stop crying she asks the doctors if they know what happened and no one can tell her except that everything shows I was abused and severely beaten. A few minutes later Ian the monster who hurt me walks into the doorway of the room and Nanny turns and looks at him because she heard him with a fake sounding cry say whats wrong with him. Nanny gets very mad and says to Ian what did you do to him she knew he did it just by the way he was acting. Nanny goes after Ian and tells him she is going to hurt him but not in very nice words. They grab Ian and rush him down the hallway into a room away from Nanny, they tell her that I need to be taken to surgery right away Nanny kisses me again and tells me to hang on baby and that she loves me and will see me soon. The doctors take me out of the room very quickly and rush me to surgery to try to save me from all the damage that was caused. Nanny, Mommy, and Ian are told to go to the waiting area for the surgery unit and as soon as they know a nurse will update them on my condition. Nannay goes outside first to call my Pappy who is in Texas, because she doesn’t know who else to call she cant think and knows Pappy loves me just as much as she does. Nanny comes back upstairs and talks to the nurse who says I am still in surgery and asks if there is anything she can do for her. Nanny is still crying and says Yes save my grandson,the nurse knows it’s bad and she starts crying too. Nanny can’t sit still and walks past the window and see’s Ian but she also see’s the police and she asks if they are here to find out what happened to me and they tell her yes. They take Ian to another part of the hospital an begin questioning him Nanny stops several of the Investigators and said that she had a sick gut feeling that Ian did this. After several hours they come out and tell Nanny that I am in critical condition and on full life support in a comatose state. I have been shaken so hard that I am now blind and they had to remove part of my skull to relieve the swelling from my brain. I have damage to the frontal lobe, the right parietal lobe, the right occipital lobe, the right temporal lobe, the right thalamus , and they had to take out the large blood clot from the right cerebellum, and I had bleeding on the left side of my brain,.My brain had swelled so much and the shaking was so severe that I had blood in my spinal cord and my brain shifted a half inch to the left. I had lost so much blood that I had to have 2 blood transfusions. The police now have Ian and are questioning him It would be several hours later that he finally admits that he hurt me and he is arrested. Nanny is told that she has to leave the hospital and that she can’t see me, it would be 2 days before she can come see me because no one is allowed in my room. Nanny geos to court and gets a court order to be with me. The doctors continue to tell us there is no hope of recovery and that the damage is to severe for me to survive. They tell my Nanny to prepare for my funeral and call my Pappy in Texas and tell him if he wants to say goodbye he had better hurry to come see me. It was 11 days later that they tell my Nanny that I am brain dead and will never breathe on my own again. On day 13 my Nanny lays in bed with me all day long just talking to me and my Pappy on the phone. The doctors come into the room and tell Nanny it is about time to take me off of life support Nanny starts crying because she isn’t ready to let me go. She tells the doctors that she want’s to hold me while I pass away so I wont be alone and feel unloved.The nurse asks if Nanny needs anything and she said a rocking chair. The nurse then asks if anyone was there to be with her after I pass away because they don’t want her to be alone. That where my aunt Jenn comes in the nurse made her come into the room to be with us . They tell us it is time and the unhook all of my medications and then my ventilator and hand me to Nanny very quickly they say it won’t be long. Nanny and aunt Jenn are crying because I am struggling to breathe and am coughing up blood. Nanny tells me that no matter what she will be there and if I want to stay she will be by my side no matter what, she also tells me that if I can’t fight anymore she understands but no matter what she will always love me. By the grace of God and My will to live I survive. Nanny won’t let me go and rocks me for 8 hours straight. The doctors still had no hope of survival or any hope of recovery, But I lived and I fight every day just to do the basic little things that people take for granted. I have learned to sit up all by myself, I am paralyzed on the left side of my body but I am slowly learning to use my left leg. I struggle everyday to stay healthy and can’t do the little things like a normal person. I can see but not very well . I can talk but can’t tell you my basic needs. I get sick very easily now and am constantly seeing the doctors, but I survived and my Nanny said that no matter what she has to go through I am worth it. I lost alot and will never have a normal life again due to the actions of a monster named Ian Huff and he showed me no mercy . I am safe now and I know that I will always be loved no matter what By my Nanny.. I will always have to fight to get better but I am an amazing little man who doesn’t know what it is to give up.I can’t tell you my story but my Nanny sure can and she will so everyone can see what the actions of one person can do to an innocent child. Please if you know anyone in my situation or even think they are don’t let it go unheard.
Join Chris and his Nanny to show support for a tougher sentence against Child Abuse in court G01. Chris was severly beaten by Ian Huff in October 2011 while his mother was at work. Chris is now in a wheelchair and suffers from a tramatic brain injury. Chris is a hemiplegic and paralyzed on the left side due to 2 massive strokes, he had to have the right cerebellum removed to save his life due to a very large blood clot in the brain. He is blind/low vision due to being shaken so severly that both retina’s were detatched, his pupils were blown and he had retinal hemorrhaging in both eye’s. Chris struggles everyday just to communicate,sit,stand,or be mobile on his own. I think that this little guy deserves justice and maybe just maybe if we speak loud enough the courts and politicians will listen and the next child will get justice too. I am keeping this up so we can get enough people to see what happens to the children who survive the severe abuse. Ian Huff was sentenced on October 21,2012. Ian Huff was sentsentenced to 20 years with a plea deal and his charge was downgraded to Assault and battery to a minor causing major injury. In Indiana in 2012 the law was 2 for 1 on felony time. Basically Ian Huff will only serve half of his sentence and is due for release September 09, 2022. Chris however was given a life sentence for no crime.
Chris is now 11 years old and has multiple major medical issues all of which are due to him being violently shaken at 3 1/2 years old. Chris will never have the chance to enjoy any of the things most people take for granted. He will never graduate, have a girlfriend, learn to drive, have a job, go to college, get married, have children, or be able to care for himself. Chris requires 24 hour care, is in diapers, takes multiple medications several times daily to be able to just survive, he has had 15 major surgeries, is now non ververbal due to having 1000 plus seizures monthly which are being somewhat controlled by a VNS ( vegal nerve stimulator, and seizure medication ). Chris is also on a medication called Cisapride due to his stomach and intestines no longer functioning properly, this was our last ditch effort to keep Chris from getting a GJ tube. This medimedication is no longer on the market and is only given as a compassionate care medication. Chris has cerebral palsy which has taken a turn for the worse over the last year, and is causing more muscle issues including breathing and swallowing issues. Chris has not only lost his childhood, but most of his family as well. A lot of people whom said they loved him walked away because they said he wasn’t the same, or they did not know how to deal with his disabilities, but most just said they couldn’t stand to see him like this. I added some pictures of Chris on his 3rd birthday, the injuries due to abuse, and him now.
I would like to introduce you to Kaden.
This is my son Kaden. To most, Kaden looks like a happy and healthy seven year old but his dark black curls cover the scars on his head that tell the story of the trauma inflicted by the hands of someone who should have been protecting him at three months old. On March 7, 2013, I got a phone call at work telling me Kaden wasn’t feeling well. I rushed home. I sat down on the couch with Kaden and a bottle. Kaden took a few sips. Within a few seconds, he projectile vomited across the living room.
For the next five days, Kaden’s father and I took him to the ER. Each visit, the doctors told us Kaden had a stomach bug. On the fifth ER visit, I refused to leave the hospital. Kaden spent the next ten days in the hospital. They released Kaden saying he was allergic to his formula.
Fast-forward almost 54 days from March 7th, Kaden’s head was getting larger in the front and smaller in the back. I begged our pediatrician at the time to go see a neurologist because I was concerned about his head size. His head was above the 100th percentile. Kaden’s father and I finally got an appointment with a neurosurgeon. After a CT scan of Kaden’s head, the neurologist came in to speak with us. This was the moment my world came crashing down around me. The doctor came in and said “this is not doing to be an easy conversation, but someone has shook your son.” I could feel the rug was pull up and under my feet. We were rushed to the hospital.
The trauma doctor at the hospital explained to me, Kaden was shook of a rate of 55 to 75 mph. Kaden had to have immediate surgery because over 7 CMs of blood had collect in the front pocket of his skull pushing his brain back. The doctor said if we did not have surgery immediately Kaden could have a stroke from the pressure of the blood pushing on his brain. After surgery, the neurologist explained to me, Kaden had old blood and new blood, which could be an indication my son was shook multiple times after the first shake on March 7th.
It breaks my heart to know one day I will have to explain to my son his own father almost killed him. Not only did his father shake him, he did not speak up to get him the proper medical care he knew his son needed for 54 days. His father went to every ER visit, doctor appointment, and hospital stay with us before the shake was found. Being a coward, he said nothing! Over a two-year time span, Kaden had to have three brain surgeries to include a shunt placement and a shunt removal.
Even though my son looks perfectly normal to someone who does not know his story, that does not mean he does not have lasting side effects from his trauma. He will always have extreme ADHD, sensory processing disorder, and some impulse control issues. Thankfully with the correct guidance of a wonderful pediatrician, my son’s behavioral issues from the shake are managed with the proper medication. He has a passion for life. He loves to dance, swim, play sports, and telling jokes. He loves his school, his teachers, and his friends. In honor of his survivor’s story, our family started a Facebook group called “With Love, From Kaden.” Kaden’s family, friends, school, and supporters collect donations each year to deliver to the children in the hospital. It is our way to give back to the hospital that saved his life and honor his survivor’s story. As Kaden’s mother, it will always be my goal for Kaden to have the best life possible in honor of the innocent little ones who did not survive their trauma!