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November 2011 Archives

The Cost of a Phoenix Divorce

Love doesn't come easy, and divorce doesn't come cheap. Just thinking of financial issues during a divorce, such as splitting your assets, may already give you a headache. Add in the fact that you actually have to pay to get divorced, however, and you may just want to stay married.

In Maricopa County, the cost of filing for a divorce will set you back $321 , reports ABC15 News. This doesn't include other procedural costs that may be added depending on the specific elements of the divorce, according to Aaron Nash of the Maricopa County court system.

And if you'd rather have someone fill out the paperwork for you, it could cost you an extra $199. Add $100 on top of that if you have children.

Jhessye Shockley Case Another Example of CPS Failure?

With recent revelations from Jhessye Shockley’s siblings about the abuse inflicted on the young girl, the spotlight has again focused on the beleaguered Child Protective Services and the possibility the agency could have saved her from an allegedly toxic environment.

Bill Montgomery, Maricopa County’s chief prosecutor, expressed his frustration about the potential failure by the state’s child welfare agency to protect Jhessye, reports ABC15 News.

Rapper DMX Hopes to Save Failed Marriage with 'Relationship Rehab'

When it comes to the law and marriage, rapper DMX is no saint, but you can’t blame the man for trying. In addition to working on his legal issues, the rapper announced that he and his estranged wife will be appearing on VH1’s reality show “Relationship Rehab” to work on their marital issues, reports

DMX, whose real name is Earl Simmons, separated from his wife Tashera in July 2010 after 11 years of marriage and just two weeks after he was released from a Phoenix jail. DMX was serving his six-month jail sentence for violating the terms of his drug probation. The two have four children together.

Can Parent Posse Against Child Abductions Do a Citizen's Arrest?

In response to several attempted child abductions in the Valley, some parents have decided to take a stand and form a patrol posse to help prevent crimes against children, reports ABC15 News.

The group, organized by the child abuse prevention non-profit Starbright Foundation, met on Monday to pass out fliers of vehicle descriptions of attempted child abduction suspects.

Jhessye Shockley's Mother Arrested for Child Abuse, Girl Still Missing

The case of missing five-year-old Jhessye Shockley took an unexpected and sad twist on Monday when authorities arrested her mother, Jerice Hunter, on suspicion of felony child abuse and said they no longer expect to find the young Glendale girl alive, reports The Arizona Republic.

Despite their doubts abound finding Shockley alive, Glendale police said this is not the end to their investigation into her disappearance.

“Our mission is still to find Jhessye, even though we believe it’s unlikely she’s still going to be alive,” said Glendale Police Sgt. Brent Coombs. “We have a commitment to do that and to bring justice to the person or persons responsible for her disappearance.”

Your Health after Divorce: Fitter Men, Fatter Women?

Phoenix men, you’ll be happy to know there may be at at least one upside to divorce - a whittled-down waistline. Unfortunately for Phoenix females, the same isn’t true. In fact, you are more likely to get bigger than smaller.

Life isn’t fair, we know.

A study released last year from the American Journal of Epidemiology found that men experienced a significant increase in fitness levels compared to a decrease in fitness for women after undergoing a divorce, reports the United Kingdom’s Daily Mail.

5th Case of Attempted Abduction Requires 'Stranger Danger' Talks

Reports of a fifth attempted child abduction in Chandler have parents on edge, and police urging them to talk to their children about "Stranger Danger," reports

The incident, the fifth since school started, occurred on Monday afternoon when a man in a black van approached an 8-year-old boy walking home from school. Luckily, the boy refused the man's advances and his brother arrived before the man could attempt anything.

Tolleson Police Sergeant in Domestic Violence Dispute? Faces Charges

Police officers are supposed to uphold the law, not break it. The Arizona Republic reports that a Tolleson police sergeant may not have been following his duty to serve and protect during an alleged domestic violence dispute with his wife and stepdaughter. The reported start of the dispute? A failed Arizona Cardinals tailgate.

Sgt. Antonio Dominguez is reportedly facing multiple misdemeanor domestic violence charges after an incident at his home, according to Peoria police. Dominguez was arrested and charged with criminal damage and two counts each of assault and disorderly conduct, which are typical domestic-violence infractions.

Mother Arrested for Not Protecting Daughter from Fatal Child Abuse

An Ahwatukee mother has been charged with one count of child abuse for not alerting authorities of the beatings her husband was inflicting on her daughter, reports ABC15 News. The three-year-old girl eventually died from the beatings.

Ambreatta Daniels is accused of failing to stop her husband, Corey Daniels, from beating the little girl. Authorities reportedly found pictures of the girl’s abused body on her cellphone dating from Sept. 3 through Oct. 13. The photos showed the young girl with bruises, abrasions and bite marks on her body.

Mail Order Chicken Pox: Can Parents Expose Children to Diseases?

It's a trend that's horrifying doctors, getting shock value attention in the media, and throwing the spotlight on parents who don't believe in vaccines: shipping disease-infected objects in order to expose other parents' children to different illnesses. The act of sending diseases through the mail could be criminal by itself, but it also begs the legal question of whether parents have the right to expose their children to diseases in the first place.

Parents with legal custody of a child have the right to make long-term decisions about how a child is raised. They have a right to direct the care, control and upbringing of their children for as long as they are minors. This does give them the power to make various decisions, including what medical treatments to obtain.

Facebook Divorce: Judge Orders Couple to Swap Social Media Passwords

Since Facebook and other social media sites have been blamed for causing 20 percent of divorces in America, it was only a matter of time before your social media information was up for grabs during divorce and custodial battles.

Well, the time is nigh divorcing couples: A judge in Connecticut reportedly ordered a couple to exchange their social networking passwords, according to Forbes.

With the court order, Stephen and Courtney Gallion now have access to each other's Facebook and dating website profiles and all of the information that data entails. Given how notoriously open people have been on social media sites, it's likely to be a lot.

Sexual Harassment Rampant Among Students, Survey Says

With the advent of social media and mobile technology, it has become easier for students to become victims of sexual harassment by their peers, according to a survey by the American Association of University Women.

Forty-eight percent of 7th-12th grade students reportedly experienced some type of student-on-student sexual harassment, according to the study. The sexual harassment knew no bounds in terms of gender, age or race. While one ninth-grade girl was called a whore for having too many male friends, a senior boy was depicted with his face on a copulating animal.

Sexual harassment among students represents a vicious cycle of abuser and abusee, according to the study's authors.

Report: AZ Child Deaths from Abuse or Neglect Increase in 2010

Although the total number of child deaths have declined over the past two years, the number of Arizona children who died from abuse or neglect increased in the same time period, reports The Arizona Republic.

The statistics of child deaths come are culled from the Arizona Child Fatality Review Program’s annual report which is slated to be released by November 15. The grim numbers show that 70 children died from child abuse or neglect in 2010 compared to 64 deaths in 2009.

“It was the major area where we saw any increase at all,” said Mary Rimsza, a pediatrician and chair of the state child fatality-review board.

Chandler Woman Gets Probation in Child Abuse Case

If you're trying to commit a robbery, chances are you shouldn't be dragging your young child along for the ride. A Chandler woman was sentenced to 10 years of probation on Thursday after her son was injured in her attempt to rob a Chandler store, reports the Associated Press.

Nicci Paige Rounsaville was arrested in May after her completely-botched robbery attempt. Employees said they saw the child bump his head on a doorway as Rounsaville fled the store. Once outside, the 23-year-old ran into a car parked in a handicapped spot, placed the toddler in the front passenger seat without a restraint, and backed into another vehicle. Police eventually caught the Chandler woman and found marijuana in her car during a search of her vehicle.

Parents Arrested for Giving Methadone Kool-Aid to Toddler

The parents of a young boy recovering in a Phoenix hospital after nearly dying from a methadone dose are under arrest on suspicion of child abuse, reports The two-year-old was allegedly given methadone in his Kool-Aid.

Jennifer Campos and Anthony Casillas allegedly admitted to Phoenix police that they gave their son the potent narcotic pain reliever because his teeth hurt. The boy reportedly had "bottle rotted front teeth and bleeding gums."

Ironically, Campos said the couple did not seek medical treatment for the boy's mouth problems because they were on the run from Child Protective Services. CPS reportedly had tried to remove the couple's three children and cut all their medical and dental benefits. Campos and Casillas were each charged with three counts of child neglect and four counts of child abuse. Their other two children are currently in the protection of CPS, which the boy continues to recover in the hospital.

MCSO: 'Deadbeat Parents' Sweep Nets 31 Arrests

Trick-or-treat or "deadbeat parents" sweep?

Over the Halloween weekend, the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office conducted its targeted campaign of serving arrest warrants on individuals suspected of domestic violence and failure to pay child support, reports The Arizona Republic. And the timing of the sweep wasn't an accident.

"The knock on several people's doors won't be a child in a Halloween costume but a grown-up in a sheriff's deputy uniform with handcuffs," Sheriff Joe Arpaio said.