Thanks to new scientific knowledge about Shaken Baby Syndrome, a man wrongfully convicted in 2002 of killing his 4-month-old daughter has had his conviction reversed after spending nearly 17 years in prison. The San Francisco law firm Keker, Van Nest & Peters and the Northern California Innocence Project (NCIP) at Santa Clara University School of Law brought forth the new evidence, which reflects updated knowledge about the causes of Shaken Baby Syndrome and the risk of parents improperly being charged with murder in cases of household accidents. The California Superior Court of Sacramento reversed Zavion Johnson’s murder conviction, which occurred when he was 18 years old. In what he has always claimed was a tragic accident, Johnson’s daughter, Nadia, slipped from his arms and fell in the bathtub while Johnson was bathing her. She later died from internal injuries. Despite 15 witnesses including Nadia’s mother, testifying that Johnson was a loving, caring father, medical experts at the time cited the then-medical consensus that the only possible explanation for Nadia’s injuries and death involved Shaken Baby Syndrome. Jurors called the medical evidence “overwhelming,” and sentenced him to life in prison, even though, as one juror recollected, they “felt that Zavion Johnson was a good young man, very loving to his girlfriend and their baby girl, and that it would seem horribly out of character for him to murder his baby.” The juror went on the say, “without that evidence, we certainly would not have convicted Zavion Johnson.” Using modern science, medical experts, including the original pathologist that testified at Johnson’s trial, have since reviewed the case. The experts agree that Nadia’s injuries are consistent with the fall originally described by Johnson 17 years ago and they can no longer say it was abuse.
California Man Acquitted of Shaken Baby Syndrome of 2 Month Old Son – Fights to Get Son Back 2 Years Later
A Bakersfield man who was acquitted of injuring his infant son has filed a lawsuit alleging civil rights violations against the City of Bakersfield and accusing a police detective of fabricating evidence against him. The lawsuit filed in federal court on behalf of 21-year-old Jesus Flores alleges deprivation of civil rights, interference with familial relationship and municipal liability in seeking compensatory damages and attorney fees, as well as exemplary and punitive damages against the defendants. Flores spent two years in jail before a jury acquitted him of three felony charges June 16. He had faced up to life in prison if convicted. He still can't get his baby back, and CPS is about to adopt him out. Flores said he's going to do everything possible to regain custody of his son. "At 2 months, my son was stripped away from me," he said. "It was wrong what they did," he said of Bakersfield police.
When Michael and Chelsea Wolken of Canyon County, Idaho, picked up their 5 month old baby last month from the babysitter's house, they were concerned that she wasn't acting right. Now, the babysitter has been charged with felony injury to a child and accused of Shaken Baby Syndrome. Now that the parents are no longer being blamed, their baby should be home. Child Protective Services doesn't see it that way, and they appear to be looking for any reason they can find to keep the child in their custody. The parents are devastated and just want Baby Rylee home, where she belongs.
An Idaho couple has been blindsided by an accusation of Shaken Baby Syndrome. Michael and Chelsea Wolken had a date night and left their 5 month old baby in the care of a trusted babysitter. They knew something wasn't right when they got baby Rylee home that night, but they never dreamed that her symptoms would be diagnosed days later as Shaken Baby Syndrome. The Wolkens have more questions than answers about what happened to make their baby so sick, but one thing they say they are certain of - they didn't shake their baby. A Child Abuse Specialist pediatrician told police and Child Protection Services that the baby's condition had to be caused by abuse, based on his interpretation of x-rays, despite the fact that there were no external signs of trauma, such as a neck injury, bruising, or history of violence in the parents. Since the doctor has made this diagnosis, CPS has taken custody of Rylee and removed Chelsea's other 4 children from the home. And doctors have stopped looking for any other explanation. A very sick baby is now living with strangers in foster care.
Nearly a year after a judge overturned the murder conviction of a former suburban day care worker accused of killing a newborn in her care, the woman is suing investigators for allegedly withholding evidence and fabricating scientific findings, according to court documents. Jennifer Del Prete, 46, spent nearly a decade in prison after she was found guilty of first-degree murder in the 2003 death of 14-month-old Isabella Zielinski. Authorities accused Del Prete of shaking the 4-month-old at the day care where Del Prete served as a caretaker. The baby died about 10 months later. During her trial, a state medical expert testified that Isabella's injuries could have been inflicted only on the day she became unresponsive, ignoring evidence that the baby had suffered an unexplained brain injury days earlier. A Freedom of Information request filed by journalism students at Northwestern University's Medill Justice Project uncovered a memo written by the lead Romeoville detective who worried that the pathologist who conducted the autopsy did not agree with the shaken baby syndrome theory.
Pitocin is one of the most commonly used drugs in childbirth, given to the majority of birthing women to either induce or augment (speed up) labor. Cytotec is also used by many doctors to induce labor. As common as they are, they are not without significant risks to both mother and baby. There are known side effects that are rarely, if ever, told to parents. Unfortunately, some of these risks also appear on the list of symptoms of Shaken Baby Syndrome (SBS), or, as it is sometimes called, Abusive Head Trauma (AHT). Hundreds of parents each year are accused of SBS. The National Center on Shaken Baby Syndrome estimates that there are 1,300 cases of SBS per year in the U.S. Many have their children seized by Child Protective Services. Some are imprisoned, and some have even been put to death. How many accused parents are aware that simply having labor induced or augmented could cause Shaken Baby symptoms in their baby? Perhaps more importantly, how many doctors, social workers, attorneys, and judges are aware of this? Or are they aware, but choose not to disclose this information?
The VAXXED team recently interviewed a mother from New Jersey, now living in Florida, about her vaccine-damaged son. Her son has brain injuries, and initially she was accused of Shaken Baby Syndrome (SBS). They removed her other child from her home, and tried to get her to confess to a crime she never committed. Her son almost died, and at one point they encouraged her and her husband to just donate his organs. But he pulled through, and with the use of alternative therapies such as hyperbaric oxygen therapy and medical cannabis (CBD oil), he has seen significant improvement.
Virginia Mount was a stay-at-home mom to two beautiful boys. She lived a normal and happy life with her boyfriend and two sons, Jace, 15 months old, and Colten, three years old. In their recreation time they enjoyed fishing, sailing, picnicking, and simply relaxing and playing together. On November 11, 2015, Jace stood up on top of the sofa. As he came tumbling down onto the floor, his arm broke and the whole world he lived in with his family, shattered to pieces. After the fall, as she waited in the Nationwide Children’s Hospital waiting room in Columbus, Ohio, Virginia felt as if time had frozen. Initially, she didn’t think the fall was very serious. After all, it was just a tumble. But when he was transferred from their local hospital to this one, Virginia felt a knot form in her stomach. At that point, though, her greatest fear was merely that Jace would have to endure the physical pain of an injury. She had no idea that her entire family was about to be destroyed, that both her sons would suffer the devastating trauma of losing their families, possibly forever, and that she would be incarcerated for a crime she did not commit.
Once again we see the terrible injustice of the false science behind "Shaken Baby Syndrome" (SBS) and how it destroys families, often imprisoning innocent parents and caregivers. More and more courts and judges are overturning past convictions as the "science" behind SBS crumbles. In this story recently published in Australia, Lorraine Harris was convicted of killing her baby, and then had her second child taken away from her after birth because of the false conviction. She served 17 months of her sentence before being paroled, and then fought to clear her name. She was "successful" in clearing her name, but lost everything. Her second son was adopted out and she has had no contact with him. Ironically, Dr. Waney Squier testified in both her conviction, and in her acquittal. That's because Dr. Waney Squier, a world renowned neuropathologist, has become one of the world's most outspoken critics on the lack of science behind SBS. She has sacrificed her career to tell the world the truth, and to stand for those wrongly accused.
In 2014, Health Impact News brought you a story about a Jonesborough, Tennessee, couple Joe and Charlotte Whitaker, who were accused of Shaken Baby Syndrome (SBS). The local police charged the couple following a 911 call from Joe Whitaker on August 15, 2013, when their son, Jaden, became unresponsive. Jaden was diagnosed with the controversial Shaken Baby Syndrome by a “child abuse specialist," Dr. Mary Palmer of the University of Knoxville Medical Center. In an update to this tragedy, the formerly happy family of five has lost everything. The couple lost their son to the state in 2014, and recently Charlotte lost her husband, home, and job. Joe Whitaker is now in jail for a crime his family says he did not commit.