by Health Impact News/MedicalKidnap.com Staff
On June 8th, 2015, Nikki and Rodney Wisler of Anderson, Indiana, noticed bruises on their one-month old daughter Leigh Ann. They took her to Community Hospital Anderson’s Emergency Room, as advised by their pediatrician over the phone. The concerned parents worried that their new baby might have a genetic disorder that caused the bruises, since their 2.5 year-old daughter Caridie had been diagnosed with a genetic disorder the previous year.
Initially, the E.R. did not find anything of concern, and since the baby was not in pain, they sent the parents home, advising them to follow up with their regular pediatrician the next morning. The following day, their pediatrician sent the parents back to the hospital for x-rays and a head ultrasound. After they left the hospital, they were called back again for additional x-rays to “rule out a fracture.”
Later, the pediatrician called them, saying there was a tibia fracture, and directed them to come back to the E.R. to have the baby’s leg splinted. The pediatrician explained that she had to call the Department of Child Services (DCS) because there was an unexplained fracture and bruises. Nikki and Rodney weren’t concerned, since they knew they had done nothing wrong. However, they were traumatized when DCS seized custody of their children that night and accused them of abuse. Nikki recalls,
We got to the ER around 6 pm for splint and at around 9 pm we were told they were detaining our kids! We did nothing wrong but try to find out what was going on with our infant. We were followed out as we said our goodbyes.
We have been desperate to get our girls home and find out what’s wrong. CPS is refusing to do any testing to find a reason and are assuming abuse despite us begging them to [do genetic testing].
Without an investigation or even a home visit, warrants were issued for the Wisler’s arrest. Initially the children were placed in kinship care with their aunt in June, but currently the children are living with Nikki’s grandmother.
The Wisler’s lost everything: their children, their reputations, their jobs, and their home. The Wisler’s are shocked how the system can be so heartless and punitive towards loving parents, and how the doctors, social workers, and prosecuting attorneys are quick to call “child abuse” and destroy a family allegedly without an investigation or any evidence. Nikki laments,
My kids were very happy and the DCS agent who took my kids told me, “sometimes happy kids are abused kids.” I was outraged!
There is a rising number of parents being accused of child abuse and losing their children to State custody, when in fact, their injuries may be a “genetic disorder” or caused by vaccine damage. MedicalKidnap.com has published several stories regarding the link between vaccine injuries and vaccine damage, which offer insight on this subject.
“Gag Orders” from Court-Appointed Attorneys?
Nikki originally contacted Health Impact News back in July of 2015, shortly after the children had been removed, but decided not to share her story at that time, at the advice of her court-appointed attorney. She was led to believe that if she spoke up about what happened, it would cause delays in getting her children back home quickly. She recalls of the attorney’s advice back in July,
The only reason the attorney said no is because he thinks we might get them back at the Sept 2nd hearing. He don’t want us to put anything in the way of that. He said to wait til after that hearing.
After more than 5 months of trying to get their children home, and having no contact with their newborn baby (until recently), Nikki re-contacted Health Impact News, frustrated with the system, and ready to share her story. She declares,
I am finally ready even though my attorney don’t want me to yet. Even my county who wants me locked up don’t want me to speak. Lawyers think talking will make it harder on us but we’re tired of being quiet, I mean were facing prison time!
Health Impact News has previously reported how judges have issued unconstitutional gag orders, but now we are hearing more reports from parents of court-appointed attorneys advising them to not go public, causing many people to question: who are these attorneys working for – the family or the system?
Warrants Issued, Parents Turn Themselves In & are Slandered in Local Media
When the children were first taken into custody, the Wisler’s were told by the detective that they could take a “voluntary voice stress test,” but they declined per attorney advice. Little did they know this would be construed by the authorities as “not cooperating with the investigation,” and result in warrants for their arrest. When the Wisler’s learned of the warrants on June 16th, 2015, they turned themselves in.
We found out we had warrants through Madison County Court. The state issued these warrants. We turned ourselves in for them. The warrants were for not cooperating with the investigation. We were tricked – they said we could take a voluntary voice stress test the day after they detained my kids. We denied [the voice stress test] per attorney advice.
I spent 28 hours in jail and bonded with $1,000. Rodney spent 3 days in jail and was also bonded on $1,000. My grandma got a loan and we sold everything we own of value. No trial yet we have been charged but not yet convicted with two felonies a piece. A level 5 felony for Battery of a minor and a level 5 felony for Neglect of a Dependent.
When the Wisler’s learned that they had been headlined in the local news and radio, and were being plastered on social media, they say they were instantly ruined. Nikki recalls,
We have lost our jobs and they have completely tarnished our names. I wanted to tell our story for all the pain we have been through recently especially with us being plastered all over the TV radio and social media. They lied and said she was battered which she was not, and CPS lied and said the ER doctors suspected abuse which medical records prove they did not. They also lied and are saying I blamed their father which again we can prove is not true. We have witnesses to that as well.
The news ruined us. Everywhere we go people know us. Rodney walked into a store and was called ‘a baby leg breaker’ by the employee and she was not fired and is not in trouble for it. We headlined fox news, was on the radio, in the newspaper, and all over social media. We can’t go anywhere without someone saying ‘you guys are the bad parents on the news you abused your kids.’
Gaining employment has been hard. I was working for a company taking care of disabled adults, that was ruined. I loved my job. No investigation was ever done, no one ever looked at my home either. Not DCS or Criminal. Due to the two felonies pending we can’t even get jobs.
Nikki is still astounded how the local media could publish slanderous stories without even interviewing them, and how they can be charged as child abusers without even a police investigation. See:
“Child Abuse Specialist” Doctor Diagnoses Abuse Without Ever Meeting the Child or Family
Nikki says that all the abuse allegations are based on the opinion of Dr. Hibbard, a Child Abuse Specialist, who merely examined Leigh Ann’s x-rays, but never even met the Wisler’s or evaluated Leigh Ann in person. Dr. Hibbard’s “expert opinion” was able to “diagnose” the Wisler’s as “criminal child abusers.” Nikki surmised,
She would have never said abuse if she knew us. Dr. Hibbard was the basis for everything. Her statement caused it all. She is the child abuse expert at Riley Hospital for Children in Indianapolis. I didn’t even know there was such a thing until now. She is well known in sexual abuse cases so why is she in my fracture case anyways?!
There are a growing number of parents being charged as child abusers (a criminal offense) simply based on the opinion of a medical doctor. Parents in these family court cases are often not given Due Process, like a proper police investigation, that other alleged criminals are given in criminal court.
Older Daughter Has Genetic Disorder, but Hospital Refused to Test Baby
The previous year, on February 26, 2014, the Wisler’s had a scare with their first daughter Caridie, when she was only 15 months old and she became unresponsive and was seizing one morning. After a week in the hospital, Caridie was diagnosed with Primary Carnitine Disease (PCD). During their time in the hospital, CPS was called, but the case was quickly closed when Caridie was diagnosed with PCD by a specialist. Nikki remembers,
One day I came home from work and she was throwing up. She threw up all night without a fever so we kept pushing fluids and was going to call her pediatrician in the morning like any parent would. Around 7 in the morning her father woke me up saying she was burning up. I sat up hardly awake and took her temp it was 104 so I went to get her up to rush her to the ER. She was unresponsive and was seizing. She stopped breathing 3 times between the house and the ER. We called 911 but because of the ice they were taking too ling. My mom rushed us to the hospital all the while I was doing cpr. She was put on life support and rushed to the local children’s hospital. It took a week and a ton if tests to find her carnitine problem. Cps opened a case and closed it within a day as they couldn’t prove we did anything wrong.
Nikki shares that PCD is a rare metabolic disorder that affects Caridie’s muscles, kidneys, heart, and digestion, as well as her growth and weight gain. Caridie is also hypoglycemic. Nikki and Rodney maintain that they are loving parents who would do anything to help their children. According to Nikki,
She almost died when she was 15 months old. She is now 2.5 and healthy due to us changing our whole lifestyle just to cater to her needs.
Nikki and Rodney have a Facebook page documenting Caridie’s journey with Carnitine deficiency.
On June 8th, 2015, when Leigh Ann was brought in to the E.R. for unexplained bruises, and was later diagnosed with a fractured tibia, understandably, the Wisler’s wanted to have her tested for a genetic disease. Since Caridie has been diagnosed with PCD, they believed there had to be some genetic explanation for the bruises and broken bone, since they both contend that there is no way it was caused by abuse. But doctors refused to do any genetic testing on Leigh Ann, confident of their “abuse diagnosis.”
Nikki says they kept searching for a 2nd opinion, even taking Leigh Ann’s x-rays to Caridie’s genetic specialist, as well as emailing the x-rays to Dr. Ayoub, who has testified on the behalf of many innocent parents involving cases of misdiagnosed rickets and brittle bone disease. Nikki explains,
We are pushing testing on our own since cps has closed their side if the investigation and are trying to rule it as abuse. We took her and her x-rays to my oldest [daughter’s] genetics doc who used to head up the bone clinic here. He said he don’t believe it’s a true fracture but even if they could rule it as a fracture, he believes she may have OI (also known as brittle bone disease) and that it didn’t appear to be a fracture. He said even if it could be ruled as a fracture it isn’t an abuse fracture due to the odd location and the size of it. We have been referred to his partners at the bone clinic. Daddy and I have not yet been tested.
Fracture Finding Retracted, Prosecutors Still Charging Child Abuse Based on Bruises
The x-rays have been re-evaluated and now doctors are saying there is no fracture, but the Wisler’s are continuing to fight a system determined on charging them with child abuse based solely on the unexplained bruises.
According to Nikki, when Dr. Ayoub reviewed Leigh Ann’s x-rays, he said she never even had a fracture. Nikki quotes Dr. Ayoub as saying:
“…tibial cortical irregularity. This is what your child has. Not a fracture.”
Nikki attests that Dr. Ayoub has offered to help and said he would testify on their behalf, but she says her court-appointed attorneys will not even contact him. However, Dr. Hibbard changed her “expert opinion” after Nikki submitted Dr. Ayoub’s statement of “cortical irregularity” to her attorney. According to Nikki,
On Aug 6th I submitted this to my attorneys, on Aug 26 Dr. Hibbard changed her statement. She said, “Now having follow-up films and having reviewed them with pediatric radiology we still agree the first films were very suspicious for a fracture, however, we do not feel the follow up films confirm that suspicion. Rather it is believed the finding is much more likely a developmental variation and not a fracture.”
Nikki states that even though Dr. Hibbard retracted the fracture finding, she went on to claim that the bruises were still considered “abuse” because the Wisler’s cannot explain how they happened; the prosecutor is still trying to use the fracture finding, even though it has been retracted by Dr. Hibbard; and that the public defender says they can be charged with neglect and abuse based solely on the bruises. Discouraged, Nikki says,
Still no news as to when my kids are coming home. The prosecutor is still clinging to abuse and neglect. The prosecutor isn’t budging any.
Attorney Won’t Consider Car Seat Caused Bruises
While they face the possibility of prison time based solely on unexplained bruises, the Wisler’s wonder if the car seat buckle may provide the answers, but say their attorney refuses to consider it. Nikki demonstrates,
We believe the bruises were from her car seat because of the position of them. There were two identical bruises on the inner thighs above the knees. We believe it was the car seat buckle. It matches perfectly and the hospital kept tightening her car seat too much every time we took her in for a weight check, but they won’t accept that [explanation], even with pictures.
Frustrated, Nikki states,
No one has allowed us to speak or present evidence.
All-Day Unsupervised Visits with Older Child, but No Contact with Breastfed Baby for Over 5 Months
Because Caridie did not have any signs of abuse, the Wisler’s have been able to have all-day unsupervised visits with her, but for their breastfed baby Leigh Ann, they were ordered “no-contact” for over 5 months.
All too often when CPS seizes breastfed babies, they are prevented from continuing to breastfeed and bond during this critical developmental time and forced on formula by CPS. According to Nikki,
We have been seeing Caridie since day 3 [of her being in kinship care]. Caridie was found as no signs of abuse. We get her from when she wakes up til time for bed.
The criminal charges prevented us from seeing Leigh Ann since June 16. We went to jail and the State put a no contact order between Rodney and I and both of us and Leigh Ann. I was breastfeeding and yes I tried pumping but I don’t respond well to pumps and I dried up, and the Dr and aunt stopped it and have her formula. She is on medicated formula now and has acid reflux. I no longer can see her or breastfeed.
Recently, the Wisler’s were finally allowed to see their baby girl Leigh Ann. DCS finally modified their visitation and they were granted their first visit at the DCS office for one hour on Nov 30, 2015, . It had been 5.5 months since they had seen their baby girl. Nikki recalled sadly,
She cried. She didn’t know us
Nikki and Rodney currently have visits with Leigh Ann for 6 hours a week at the grandmother’s house, with DCS supervision, since the no contact order was modified in November.
To Plea or Not to Plea, that is the Catch 22
Right now the Wisler’s are awaiting jury trial set for February 2016. They have tried to divide Nikki and Rodney and turn them on each other, hoping to make one of them blame the other for the bruises, but they continue to stand strong, asserting,
Both of us are being charged because neither of us will admit we or the other one did anything wrong…because we didn’t.
On Monday, December 14th, 2015, Nikki’s public defender asked them to consider taking a plea bargain, saying that he thinks a jury will find them guilty based on the bruises.
On one hand, the attorney is asking them to plead guilty to a misdemeanor charge based on the “unexplained” bruises, since, as he contends, they can’t explain the bruises (remember the car-seat?). He says they’ll just have to “do some probation,” and the felony charges will be dropped to misdemeanor charges.
On the other hand, DCS is requiring Nikki and Rodney to have steady income and steady housing before they can have their children returned home. With the pending felony charges, they are unable to find work, and because they lost their home, they have been living with relatives.
The “Catch 22” here is that if the felony charges are dropped to misdemeanor charges, Nikki believes that she and Rodney could find work, get a home, and get their children back, but they say that they would be pleading guilty to something they did not do.
Nikki and Rodney, like so many concerned parents, went to the E.R. seeking help for an injured child, only to leave empty-handed and broken-hearted, after being accused of perpetrating injuries on their own children. Nikki pleads,
We love our kids with all our hearts and never could have imagined this would happen to us, I mean who takes kids away without investigating?
We just want our girls home. Winter is coming and that when Caridie gets the sickest. We are devastated that they have completely tore our family apart!!
Speak Out for the Wisler’s:
Nikki and Rodney are in need of a good private attorney who will take their case pro bono, or to have public pressure put on local officials to drop the charges altogether since all the doctors now allege that there never was a broken bone to begin with.
Call Judge Happe in Madison County Indiana, Circuit Court, Division 4 at 765-641-9503.
Tweet Tom Broadrick, the newly elected Mayor of Anderson Indiana, on Twitter here.
Contact Kevin S Smith, the current Mayor of Anderson Indiana, here.
Contact Sheriff Scott Mellinger at 765-646-9290, or on Facebook here.
Since the local media allegedly slandered the Wisler’s name, contact them and tell them to tell the parents’ side of the story:
1-month-old with leg fracture leads to charges for Anderson parents
WishTV.com – contact info: Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Main Phone: 317-923-8888
Prosecutor: Cases of child neglect getting more severe
This story was published on cbs4indy.com by writer, Kendall Downing – email email@example.com. station:
6910 Network Place
Indianapolis, IN 46278
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