Sunday, September 16, 2012

13 Year Old Murders and Molests Children


Drugs and children. 

A 13 year old boy has killed and the blame game and debates have begun.  Neglect and abuse sets up one for a life of hell, and it is how criminals are nurtured in life.  

When we view a sociopathic killer, there is always a story behind it.  

When a 13 year old girl lives in a home with drugs, violence, and sexual perversion, something bad is waiting to happen.
When a young man, raised in violence and neglect gets custody of a baby, and learns he can profit from her death, it is a bad combination. 

A decade before he was charged with murder, a 2-year-old Cristian Fernandez was found naked and dirty, wandering a South Florida street. The grandmother taking care of him had holed up with cocaine in a messy motel room, while his 14-year-old mother was nowhere to be found.

His life had been punctuated with violence since he was conceived, an act that resulted in a sexual assault conviction against his father. Fernandez' life got worse from there: He was sexually assaulted by a cousin and beaten by his stepfather, who committed suicide before police investigating the beating arrived.
The boy learned to squelch his feelings, once telling a counselor: "You got to suck up feelings and get over it."

Now 13, Fernandez is accused of two heinous crimes himself: first-degree murder in the 2011 beating death of his 2-year-old half-brother and the sexual abuse of his 5-year-old half-brother. He's been charged as an adult and is the youngest inmate awaiting trial in Duval County.

If convicted of either crime, Fernandez could face a life sentence -- a possibility that has stirred strong emotions among those for and against such strict punishment. The case is one of the most complex and difficult in Florida's courts, and it could change how first-degree murder charges involving juvenile defendants are handled statewide.
Underscoring the unusual nature of the case, Fernandez' defense attorneys said they aren't sure how to proceed since the U.S. Supreme Court threw out mandatory life in prison without parole for juvenile offenders in June. Another complication involves whether Fernandez understood his rights during police interrogations.
Richard Kuritz, a former Jacksonville prosecutor who is now a defense attorney, said everyone agrees that Fernandez should face consequences if convicted -- but what should they be?

"What would be a fair disposition? I don't suspect this case is going to end anytime soon," said Kuritz, who has been following the case closely.

Supporters of local State Attorney Angela Corey say she's doing the right thing by trying Fernandez as an adult: holding a criminal accountable to the full extent of the law. But others, like Carol Torres, say Fernandez should be tried in juvenile court and needs help, not life in prison.

"He should be rehabilitated and have a second chance at life," said Torres, 51. Her grandson attended school with Fernandez and she has created a Facebook page to support him.

In other states, children accused of violent crimes are often charged or convicted as juveniles. In 2011, a Colorado boy pleaded guilty to killing his two parents when he was 12; he was given a seven-year sentence in a juvenile facility and three years parole. A Pennsylvania boy accused of killing his father's pregnant fiancDee and her unborn child when he was 11 was sent this year to an undisclosed juvenile facility where he could remain in state custody until his 21st birthday.

The Justice Department said that 29 children under age 14 committed homicides around the country in 2010, the most recent year for which the statistics were available
Fernandez' judge -- and jury, if the case gets that far -- will have to decide whether to consider the boy's past when determining his future.

Fernandez was born in Miami in 1999 to Biannela Susana, who was 12. The 25-year-old father received 10 years' probation for sexually assaulting her.

Two years later, both mother and son went to foster care after authorities in South Florida found the toddler, filthy and naked, walking in the street at 4 a.m. near the motel where his grandmother did drugs.

In 2007, when Fernandez was 8, the Department of Children and Families investigated a report that he was sexually molested by an older cousin. Officials said there were other troubling incidents: he killed a kitten; he simulated sex with classmates; he masturbated at school.

In October 2010, Fernandez and his mother were living in Hialeah, a Miami suburb, with his mother's new husband. Fernandez suffered an eye injury so bad that school officials sent him to the hospital where he was examined for retinal damage. Fernandez told officers that his stepfather had punched him. When officers went to the family's apartment, they found the stepfather dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Soon, the family moved north to Jacksonville and Fernandez enrolled in middle school, getting straight A's. They settled in a bland, beige public housing complex.
A few months later on June 3, 2011, deputies were called to the apartment: Fernandez' baby brother, 2-year-old David, was dead inside. The medical examiner determined that the toddler had a fractured skull, bruising to his left eye and a bleeding brain.
Susana, then 25, admitted to investigators that she had left Fernandez, David and her other children home alone. When she returned, she said she found David unconscious.
Susana also revealed that two weeks before David's death, Fernandez had broken the toddler's leg while wrestling.

Susana was charged with aggravated manslaughter; the medical examiner said David might have survived if she had taken him to the hospital sooner for the head injury. She pleaded guilty in March and could get 30 years.
Fernandez, who had first been questioned as a witness, was soon charged with first-degree murder. The other felony charge was filed after his 5-year-old half-brother told a psychiatrist that Fernandez had sexually assaulted him.
The boy has talked openly to investigators and therapists about his crimes and his life; the gritty details are captured in various court documents.

"Christian denied any plans or intent to kill his brother," one doctor wrote. "He seemed rather defensive about discussing what triggered his anger. He talked about having a `flashback' of the abuse by his stepfather as the motive for this offense ... Christian was rather detached emotionally while discussing the incident."

Based on psychological evaluations, prosecutors say that Fernandez poses a significant risk of violence. That's why he is being detained pre-trial -- and why they charged him with two first-degree felonies.
Yet difficult questions remain for Judge Mallory Cooper: Should a child so young spend his life in prison? Does Fernandez understand his crimes, and can he comprehend the complex legal issues surrounding his case?
In August, Cooper ruled that police interrogations of Fernandez in the murder and sexual assault cases are not admissible, saying Fernandez couldn't knowledgeably waive his rights to remain silent and consult an attorney. Prosecutors are appealing.
The defense wants the charges dismissed, saying the U.S. Supreme Court ruling banning sentences of life without parole for juveniles makes it impossible for them to advise Fernandez since the Florida Legislature has not changed state law. Prosecutors say they never said they would seek a mandatory life sentence -- they say the old Florida law that called for a 25-year-to-life sentence could apply.
Mitch Stone, a Jacksonville defense attorney who is familiar with the case, said Corey and her prosecutors are in a tough position.
"I know they're good people and good lawyers," he said. "But if a resolution short of trial doesn't occur, this case is on a collision course to sending Cristian Fernandez to life in prison. That's why this is one of those very difficult cases. It's hard to understand what the appropriate measure is."


Tania Cadogan said...

In many cases prison is the best and safest place for such children.

no one knows what will happens should they be released after only a few years.
In the UK we had a 10 year old child rapist and murderer of a toddler download child porn, do drugs and get into fights. Should he be released he will carry on where he left off.

Who is to say this child will not do the same should he be released, even if they throw money at him via treatment.

He will always be a danger to childen.
hat he raped a child as well as murdered another one tells me he will always be a sexual danger to children.

The original damage may not be his fault, however the damage is there and will last forever.

For the safety of the public as well as himself such children should not be released.

he is a killer as a child
He is a paedophile as a child.
Should be be released he will be an adult not a child and thus more dangerous.

Some children from broken families can be helped, they can be repaired, tohers sadly cannot, tey are beyond repair, beyond help.
They will always be a danger to someone as well as themselves.

what if he is released and kills and rapes again?
Will their be inquiries vowing it will never happen again? There alwasy is, lessons will be learned blah blah.
It's too late for the last victim, who, if the courts and do gooders had done the right thing.
They would be alive, they wouldn't be a victim.
It is time we put the rights of the inniocent public before the rights of the criminal.

Light the Way said...

Perhaps the most appropriate remedy would be to hold him in a secure juvenile facility until he is 18 to be followed by mandatory, and indefinite, "civil commitment" to a psychiatric inpatient facility as a sexual deviant who is likely to reoffend.

This would punish Cristian Fernandez as the juvenile that he IS, while ALSO protecting society from the adult he will inevitably become.

Life in a psychiatric facility is restricted and bleak... but not as bleak as life at a super-max penitentiary.

BostonLady said...

This is a tragic story. The 14 yr old didn't have a chance with being born to a raped 12 year old, who does not sound like she had any support system herself. The mother put him in bad situation after bad situation,with the last step father physically abusing the child.

However, he may be 14 yrs of age but he is an adult in his experience of abusing, killing, sexually abusing and killing animals. I do not believe this 14 year can be rehabilitated. I know that sounds cynical but if he can kill a kitten, sexually assault his younger 1/2 brother and kill the 2 year old after breaking the 2 yr old's leg, he does not have the ability for non violence. Given the chance, he will repeat this behavior. And, from what I've read, most serial killers start out by killing animals.

Although it is not his fault for what he was born into, society also cannot take the chance given his track record. He needs to be locked up and never freed. It is not safe to be around him as he knows no boundaries which would allow him to live in free society.

sidewalk super said...

Until there are separate facilities for life long commitment of dangerous juveniles, we are stuck with present facilities. The cost to the taxpayer for any/all of this is horrendous.
Any and all of these juveniles should receive psychiatric diagnosis so that everyone knows what they are dealing with.
It is time for us to wise up and realize that some of these kids are too damaged to function.
And, I think castration for sexual offenders should be mandated.

Light the Way said...

Castration doesn't remove the sexual deviancy.
Sexual assault isn't about "sex", it's about domination and power.

Do not be lulled into a false sense of security.
It is untrue that castration causes complete inability to potentiate an erection. Even blatant eunochs are known to be able to engage in sex.

Plus, even IF a male offender can no longer "get it up", AT ALL---he still poses a recidivism risk for sex offenses:
RSO's have been known to move on to other ways of sexually offending, such as object penetration, of their victims.

sidewalk super said...

These damaged sexual offenders should not be allowed to have children!

Anonymous said...

Florida seems to be a breeding ground for that type of stuff. Not that it doens't happen elsewhere, but you here more tragic cases from that particular state it seems.

Lis said...

They do not realize that a child like this does not have the emotions or desires that they want to impute to him. For a child this damaged, prison is likely going to be the most peaceful way of life he can ever know. He will not have the opportunity to inflict his rage on anyone that is small and helpless, he will have structure and control- something he has never had and needs.

Anonymous said...

So what we need is group homes for severe offenders like this, with ankle bracelets... may be cheaper than a prison, depending on how it's set up. And if they can get them involved in an on- site trade, they can more than earn their keep.

deb said...

I don't understand why this is even an issue. We have a criminal justice system that differentiates between child and adults. This child should be tried as a child and recieve the appropriate juvy "sentence". Only in America- would a child be charged as an adult- which I still have no freaking idea how that can happen- he's was 12- I am assuming it must be some our-of-control state with a "wild wild west" law that says the state can decied a child is not a child????

Dee said...

I am so conflicted in reading this story. This kid didn't stand a chance from the minute he was born. I feel so sorry for him, for what he was born into and put through, but society must be protected. God bless the 2 year old who died and the half brother who was molested.

rob said...

I don't know what the saddest part of this story is, His 12 yr old mother who was raped, this child, who has know nothing but violence and neglect since the day he was born, or his 2 young victims. the saddest part is that when the family moved to Jax, he was a straight A student.
I agree with many posters, that to this child, prison may be the best, most structured life he has ever known.
I will be praying for this whole family, because the future doesn't look good for any of them.

rob said...

deb, I'm afraid the problem here may be, that this is all he knows. He is a preditor, its the only way he knows how to survive. And there will be other victims because of it.

emerald said...

Waivers from the juvenile justice system to the criminal justice system serve several purposes: they allow for harsher sentences than the juvenile system can mete, they are an acceptable way to divert the most severe cases from the the juvenile system and they accommodate the public's expectations for harsher penalties for the most heinous crimes. Juvenile waiver is not an anomaly--all 50 states have various forms of transfer to criminal court; judicial waiver, legislative waiver, and prosecutorial waivers are the predominant forms of transfer. These are not "wild west" laws but are necessary to handle the flux of violent crimes committed by juveniles. The removal of children to adult court is not isolated to America; most European countries allow for transfer to adult court through a variety of mechanisms.

Unknown said...

I am shocked that anyone can believe this child is utter trash and should be thrown away.

That is basically what his mother and grandma did to him, causing this... No CREATING this.

I agree, this kid is ultra likely to reoffend, but he is not guaranteed.

He is not old enough to drive. He is not old enough to buy or drink alcohol. He is not old enough to buy cigarettes

This is because a childs mind, even a late teens mind, is not developed, nor experienced enough to make responsible decision, while weighing consequences.
Case in point, every underage drinker i have ever known, drinks to get drunk, then causes situations to erupt when drunk, and they are drunk ever weekend

Not until i turned 25, did i realize it was dangerous, and bad for my body to drink myself blind, especially weekly.

Not until i turned 25 did i realize the danger of speeding and driving aggressively did not get me to my destination any quicker, AND endangered lives.

Christian could not possibly understand the damage he was doing, especially when all male role models in his life used him in this manner. And no female was there to protect him or love him, where he would have learned to love a kitten.

America is the only country in the world that sentences children under 18, to LIFE Without possibility. And that's for crimes less than murder.

In America, over 2000 children are currently sentenced TO LIFE W/O POSS. for crimes less than murder. Add murder convictions and you get several thousand more. Not including Cristian.

The rest of the world? COMBINED?


These are kids that can still order from the kids menu at Denny's. These are kids that can't see an r rated movie, yet can be thrown out like the garbage Cristian believes he is? Which he only believes because someone called him exactly that, and that loving mother or grandmother you and i grew up with, and learned love from, never told him he was not garbage, because they were high, in a motel while he was eating cigarette butts, and getting raped, and his eye socket broken

Unknown said...

If you want my solution after reading my opinion above:

Prison is not designed to help mental issues. Nobody can deny Cristian is suffering from severe mental issues. At the very least ptsd. Should our soldiers goto prison for life?

Put him into a juvi Center, with psychiatric therapy at least 3 times a week. Until 21.
Move him into adult prison, either super, max, or med security, based on prison record.
Let him learn how terrible true prison is, for at least 3 years. not long enough to create a product of the system, but long enough to let his mind develop, and him learn consequences.

Most of us know prison is terrible, without having to go, but most of us know being raped by every male role model in our life is not normal, and is worse than prison.

To a young, misunderstanding mind, being raped every day, and punched until our orbital bone is broken might be the norm.

Maybe the step dad told him, while raping him until he bled, that this is what the older man does if he loves the younger male.

Maybe Cristian truly, TRULY believed he was showing love while he wrestled violently or beat his little brother.

His mind is simply not developed enough to understand, even in the best conditions, much less in a motherless, loveless, rape and beating fest.

Certainly, absolutely Cristian might be a serial killer. But maybe, just maybe, he didn't understand, and as he matures he will not only learn, and show remorse

He deserves a chance to learn he is worth more than a crack rock. He is not put on this earth so an older man can use his body however he likes.

In fact, it would probably blow his mind to find out, majority of us, can't imagine a mother who is barely more than10 years older than us. He literally could not understand us not having a mom whom needs her drugs, and grandma won't leave her dealer, or pimp because if she stops giving him sex, even for a few minutes, another girl will take her place, and grandma won't get free drugs anymore, so we need to goto an uncle who we have to let put his body parts in our mouth.

He would not understand a male in his life that doesn't break his eye socket. He would not understand a bedtime story, nor a midnight snack with his mommy.
He doesn't have a memory of daddy bringing home a bike, for good grades.
He has memory... No, MEMORIES of anal bleeding, extreme pain, extreme shame.

Every single study shows victims of sexual abuse, in nearly 100% of cases, harbor feelings of extreme guilt and shame.
Every study shows that victims of sexual abuse will typically sexually abuse as they get older.

Sounds like you want victims of sexual abuse to get locked up too. Just to make sure they can't do it in the future.

If you disagree, you understand that they are not to blame. Through an under developed mind, they believe they are at fault for their abuse. They go untreated and thus are never rehabilitated. They harbor feelings of pain, resentment, and many times don't even know it is wrong, or illegal until they have been told for over a decade it is the norm. Certainly after a decade, they understand it as THEIR norm.
But after they grow into adults. They understand it is wrong. It is illegal. It damages people, especially minors. They understand right from wrong, AND MOST IMPORTANTLY, they learn that what happened to them, WAS WRONG.
If they don't get help, they still learn it is wrong and they learn just how devastating it is to the victims. They still might do it, but they understand its wrong, and they goto prison.

Unknown said...

Through treatment though, as they mature, there is a real possibility they can not only learn empathy for victims, but can talk through any pain, resentment, or underlying feelings and, as typically happens, become a survivor, no longer a victim.

After many years of therapy, and a "scared straight" tactic of several years in a true prison, he should be eligible for parole. Providing therapists agree, and Peter gets to read his parole statement :-)

Unknown said...

I just want to offer the possibility, that while his step father, his uncle, or a few other possible role models held him down and destroyed his innocence, and his body, maybe they whispered in his ear, "this is what happens when you're a good boy."
Or "when you love someone, you let them do this"

Maybe, in all the time Cristian went without a mother showing what love, or affection truly is, Cristian learned, from the only people in his life, the ones raping him, that this is how one shows affection.

Maybe, he might learn, through rehabilitation, that a hug is more powerful than a punch, and maybe he will become an advocate for children who are victims, and he can go talk to them about his life, and help them understand its not a dirty secret that they should hide.
It's s dirty secret of their abuser, and should be discussed until it empowers, and no longer scares or shames them.

This kid can't buy cigarettes because the government believes he doesn't understand the real concerns for addiction, or health hazards. He doesn't understand those things, because his mind cannot grasp things like death, cancer, "forever" (as in death is forever) and thus can't understand consequences, and the government knows if it allows a 12 year old to purchase cigarettes, that child will probably smoke until he coughs up his lungs, and most likely convince other children to smoke, thereby spreading more pain.

So the government understands a child cannot understand the ramifications of even cigarettes.

But, this same child, raped, abused and totally unloved, understands it is wrong to sexually assault when he was never told that? He is simply supposed to know that what was done to him... Let me rephrase.

He is supposed to know, the only life he has ever known, the only way any person has ever showed him any affection is not only wrong, but that the consequence for it is to throw him away... Like his mom, grandma did, and, only after raping him and whispering in his ear, either "this is love" or "this is your fault. If you tell you are going to get in trouble. You are garbage, this is all the love you deserve", his male role models did.