Saturday, June 27, 2015

Shaken Baby Syndrome: Michelle Heale Convicted

Shaken Baby Syndrome takes a violent, powerful shaking to dislodge the brain.  Let's look within the words of the accused for insight.  There are not many quotes, but there is something to give us a possible viewpoint

She says she hit the baby to dislodge food.  Can we know the truth?

Statement Analysis is added to quotes in bold type.

'I am not a monster': Babysitter pleads innocence and claims she was saving baby from choking when she shook him to death as she's sentenced to 15 years

  • Michelle Heale, 46, was convicted of manslaughter of toddler Mason Hess
  • Heale, of Toms River, New Jersey,  was looking after the boy in 2012
  • Claims he hit his back to dislodge applesauce he was choking on
  • Medical experts said Mason was shaken violently and had brain damage
  • Mason's parents called Heale 'a horrible monster' at sentencing hearing
From Daily Mail: 
A babysitter who shook a 14-month-old boy to death has been sentenced to 15 years in prison - but maintains that she is innocent.
Michelle Heale, 46, was convicted of the manslaughter of Mason Hess in April, despite claiming she was only trying to stop him from choking.
Heale, from Toms River, New Jersey, said that Mason had applesauce stuck in his throat, and she struck him on the back in the hope of dislodging it so he could breathe again.

Baby: Mason, pictured, died four days after the incident, which took place in 2012
Baby: Mason, pictured, died four days after the incident, which took place in 2012
Convicted: Heale was found guilty of manslaughter in April, and was given a 15-year sentence today
After the sentence was handed down, Heale said: 'I did what I thought was best for Mason. I do not regret the choices I made that day. There is nothing I would change,' the Asbury Park Press reported.

She had testified that Mason went limp in her arms after she struck him between the shoulder blades. 
During the trial, medical experts said that Mason bore the signs of being violently shaken, leaving him with extreme injuries to his brain, spine and eyes.
Mason was not killed instantly by his injuries, but died in a children's hospital four days later.
At one point in the trial, she was asked to use a toy child to re-enact the incident in August 2012n using a doll of a young child - a task which left her in tears.

Describing the moment, she said: 'I hit him hard on the back. I may have hit him harder than I should have,' Heale said through tears after demonstrating on the doll.

"I hit him hard on the back" is very likely to be truthful, within itself.  

It does not mean that this is all she did, however.  Most deception comes within truthful sentences, where the subject indeed tells us what she did, while leaving out additional information. 

'I hit him about four or five times, and then I felt the applesauce come out. I felt it on my shoulder and I felt it on my shirt.'
'As I brought him down, his head snapped back ... he was completely limp. His eyes were open, but he wasn't doing anything. ... Everything was flopping.' 

This repetition of "I felt" is interesting.  It is repeated three times.  She does not say, "I hit hit for or five times, and the applesauce came up."  This is to avoid directly telling us what happened.  We listen for the subject's own words to guide us. 

With minimization, the number of "four or five" is increased.  This is expected. 
Here is where missing information exists:
"As I brought him down", is a spanning of time.  In her mind, she must move across time, which is where we often find skipped over information.  

Next, "his head snapped back" is passive language.  Although she was the only person handling the baby, she says that his head snapped back without telling us who, or what caused his head to snap back.  Passivity in language is often used to conceal identity or responsibility.  

The description of being "limp" with eyes open is indicative of extreme shaking.  This is where gray brain matter sometimes leaks from the ears, and is a signal that the baby is not likely to survive, but if so, will be acutely brain damaged.  

It is here where the missing information lies. 

A baby diagnosed with SBS has severe injuries, which cannot be caused by hitting on the back to dislodge something in the throat.  The shaking that takes place is violent, powerful, often frustrated and angry shaking, in quest to silence a crying baby. 

It works. 


Jurors acquitted Heale of Mason's murder, but found her guilty of manslaughter and endangering the welfare of a child.
When she was found guilty, Heale broke down in tears and said 'I didn't do it' over and over. She spoke to her husband, who was in the hearing, and begged that he not let her children forget her. 
Mason's furious parents also spoke at the sentencing hearing. His mother Kellie called Heale 'a horrible monster', and his father Adam said 'the devil has saved a special place in hell for you.'

"I didn't do it" is to avoid the accusation with "I didn't shake the baby."  She told us how she hit him and then gave linguistic indication of missing information through a temporal lacunae signaling to us the location of the withheld information.  This, coupled with the passivity employed, and the lack of a reliable denial, face with medical evidence tells us that she did what she was alleged to have done. 

Shaken Baby Syndrome is not a 'pre meditated' crime, but a crime of impulse where a temper lost, for but a moment, ends the baby's life.  

It is why a lot of energy is put into educating parents about its danger:  so that the parent will think of this when a moment of frustration of a baby crying hits, as it does to all parents. 
Family: Mason is pictured above with his parents Kellie and Daniel. They called Heale 'a horrible monster' and told her she is going to hell
Family: Mason is pictured above with his parents Kellie and Daniel. They called Heale 'a horrible monster' and told her she is going to hell
The Press also reported that he said he wanted her to be given the death penalty.
Manslaughter in New Jersey can be punished with up to 30 years in prison - but Heale was not given the full amount, partly because she had no previous criminal record.
She will be eligible for parole after just less than 13 years behind bars.

15 comments:

Peter Hyatt said...

For those who have asked about the Ramadan scoreboard of the Religion of Peace, here goes:

Day 10 of Ramadan

933 Dead
985 wounded

This comes to about 190 assaults per day.

It includes

"Allah Akbars" (suicide attacks)

May, 2015 had 3,277 dead, with 1,798 wounded.

"The terrorists hijacked a religion of peace." George W Bush

Can you imagine the outcry of MSM had anyone other than those following the directives of the Koran had, so consistently, throughout all nations on the earth, been so consistently murderous?

Peter

Anonymous said...

It must have been a rare few moments of sobriety for GW when he made this statement. Not a feat easily accomplished.

Peter Hyatt said...

I don't have animosity towards "W", but my opinion on his reason for saying what he did is terribly suspect. I do not think he was a good communicator, but his intellect is not what the lack of communication skills portrayed.

I believe it was fear of offending the Arab oil nations, more than anything else, that caused him to say such a ridiculous statement.

The Koran calls for death to unbelievers, rape of women in warfare, physical discipline of women, death penalty for homosexuals, and so on.

Our government has conspired with "de facto" Sharia blasphemy laws with the "Islamophobia" and "religion of peace" like statements. That it has to be called the "religion of peace" is unnecessary, making it vital to analysis.

Hilary's state department kept from the U.S. the forced sex change operations of homosexual males.

They are coerced into undergoing sex change operations, in light of the death penalty in Iran. This is something that is getting little media attention.

It is far too late to tell Obama to stop playing the race card as the violence and division is upon us. The Constitution is despised and I am unable to think of any time in history where people were this far divided, which did not end in blood shed.

Unless there is a change, military action and the attendant blood shed may not be "over there" as much as it has been in the last 150 years.

Obama's ally, Iran, has a parliament in which they discussed their nuclear program replete with a chant, "Death to America" to join their "Death to Israel" mantra.

One man's ideological attachment to big oil caused him to say what he did, while another man's childhood ideological attachment to Islam causes him to say, and do, what we see before us.

Ideas = action.

Words express the ideas which leads to action.

Words are the currency in which we trade and trust.

Lies are counterfeit currency.

Peter

Anonymous said...

I can't imagine how the baby would choke on applesauce in the first place. Applesauce is of a thin finely chopped consistency that doesn't require any chewing. Unless she were stuffing large spoons full of the applesauce into the baby's mouth as fast as she could and forcing him to gag it down rapidly, how could he choke on it?

This was a toddler not an infant and he would have been able to swallow reasonable bites of applesauce without any problem given a little time to swallow it. It had to be the rapid force of the apple sauce down his throat that caused him to choke on it. This is the only thing that makes sense. IMO, This is the part she is not explaining.

IMO, by the time she saw what she had done in forcing the little fellow to choke on the applesauce, then tried to force the applesauce back up it was too late. Somehow in this forceful scenario she managed to cause him to snap his neck. Poor little guy.

Anonymous said...

I believe what she says, but I also believe she conveniently left out the part where she shook him violently and caused his death.

I don't believe for one moment that she hit on the back because she was afraid he was choking on applesauce. Shaken babies often vomit so she probably isn't lying when she says he vomited on her shirt, or that his head snapped back when she brought him down as by then the child would have been semiconscious and wouldn't have had the ability to hold up his own head. I'm sorry for the parents having to suffer the loss of their child in such a horrific way.

Anonymous said...

ot

Was Anjelica Hadsell A Heroin User — Or Was She Murdered?

Anjelica Hadsell’s cause of death has finally been released, and now there are even more questions than ever before in this bizarre case. WAVY News 10 reports that the once-missing woman died from “acute heroin poisoning.” In other words, her cause of death was a heroin overdose, but right now it’s not clear if she was voluntarily using drugs or if someone else was involved in her curious demise.

The Virginian-Pilot reports that even though the cause of death appears to be heroin poisoning, the manner of death is “undetermined.” This means authorities don’t know whether the death was a homicide or an accidental drug overdose. Family members of Anjelica Hadsell are not speaking to the media at this time.

Anjelica Hadsell vanished on March 2 under suspicious circumstances, and her body was found on an abandoned property a little over a month later. It’s been nearly three months and her case is as mysterious today as it was the day she vanished. So did someone kill AJ Hadsell by giving her heroin, or was she secretly using a drug that robbed her of her life?

Authorities in Virginia arrested AJ’s adoptive father Wesley Hadsell not long after she disappeared. He is accused of trying to impede the investigation into the young woman’s disappearance. When Wesley was arrested he had in his possession ammunition (but no gun) and evidence of cocaine use. Authorities have never come out to accuse the man of killing Anjelica, but sentiment among members of the public seem to be just that.

Suspicion against Wesley Hadsell is so strong in the community of Norfolk, Virginia, that speculation is running wild — especially on social media. It’s common knowledge by now that when Wesley Hadsell was arrested, he had evidence of cocaine use on him along with ammunition to a gun that police still have not found. Back then, speculation against Wesley heavily focused on the fact that he told police they would “never find the gun” that matched the ammunition he had in his possession.

Now that it’s been revealed that Anjelica’s death was caused by heroin poisoning, speculation against Wesley Hadsell remains to be a focus of the suspicious people who have watched this case from the beginning. Speculation against Wesley now involves him either injecting Anjelica with drugs, or providing her with the drugs that killed her. Meanwhile, investigators still aren’t being clear about what may have happened, and Wesley Hadsell remains jailed.

http://www.inquisitr.com/2205305/anjelica-hadsell-a-heroin-user-or-murdered/

Anonymous said...

ot

Baby may have been gone hours before she was reported missing

PENDLETON — One-year-old Leonna Wright may have been taken from the Edgewood Square apartment complex hours before she was reported missing, an Anderson County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman said Wednesday.

“We have reason to believe that the child may not have been there” when her mother arrived at their apartment early Saturday morning, sheriff’s spokeswoman Sheila Cole said in an email response to questions from the Independent Mail.

Anderson County Sheriff John Skipper said earlier this week that the child’s mother, 22-year-old Kiara Sullivan, came home around 5 a.m. Saturday after attending her sister’s bachelorette party. While she was out, Sullivan’s boyfriend, 33-year-old Travis Jones, was watching Leonna and her 3-year-old sister A’riel.

Leonna was reported missing in a 911 call at 9:47 a.m. Saturday. Sullivan and Jones told deputies that the front door to their apartment was open and Leonna was gone when they woke up, according to a sheriff’s report.

Search teams spent three days looking for Leonna in the area around the Edgewood Square apartment complex on Cherry Road. The search was called off Tuesday and investigators now believe that the 1-year-old was taken from the complex. Since neither Sullivan nor Jones owns a car, investigators are trying to determine if a friend or acquaintance of the couple who has a vehicle played a role in Leonna’s disappearance.

Anonymous said...

cont..

Sullivan said on Monday that she thinks Jones is responsible for her daughter’s disappearance. She earlier said that she gave Leonna a cup of juice at 5:30 a.m. Saturday and looked in on her again at 6:30 a.m. But Skipper said that Sullivan did not check on the child when she got home from the bachelorette party.

Deputies arrested Jones Saturday on an outstanding 2013 warrant. A Family Court judge sentenced him Tuesday to 120 days in the Anderson County Detention Center for failing to pay more than $5,000 in child support to an Anderson woman. Jones and the woman had a daughter in 2010. He is not the father of Leonna or A’riel.

Citing the ongoing probe, Cole declined Wednesday to release any statements that Jones has given to investigators.

Cole said in excess of 100 people have been interviewed in the case. According to Cole, the FBI offered to assist the Sheriff’s Office but later determined that “the case does not fall under their area of expertise.”

While Cole said forensic evidence has not yet been analyzed, Skipper said earlier this week that investigators did not find any blood in the apartment where Leonna lived with her sister, Sullivan and Jones.

http://www.independentmail.com/news/baby-may-have-been-gone-hours-before-she-was-reported-missing_21905713

JC said...

Off Topic

'I'm running for Senate to deal with serious issues blacks face here': Obama's half-brother sells revealing handwritten letter from 1995 in which president-to-be reveals political ambitions

Malik Abongo 'Roy' Obama received this letter from Obama in July 1995
It was written before the president-to-be entered politics as a senator
Obama says he is running for senator primarily to tackle racial issues
But he adds that he would not enjoy campaigning and meetings
It was sold for an undisclosed amount, another two went for $15,000


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3141971/I-m-running-Senate-deal-issues-blacks-face-Obama-s-half-brother-sells-revealing-handwritten-letter-1995-president-reveals-true-political-ambitions.html#ixzz3eMl1mz4k
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

just sayin' said...

"Michelle Heale, 46, of Toms River, told the jury that 14-month-old Mason Hess was showing signs of being ready for his regular afternoon nap at around 2 p.m. on Aug. 28, 2012 when she decided to feed him an applesauce snack in a squeezable container to help him sleep.

The mother of twins who were also home at the time, admitted that it was the first thing she had fed Mason....since he ate a wheat bagel for breakfast at around 8:30 a.m., even though she had told Mason's mother, Kellie Hess, at around 12:30 p.m. that he had eaten all of his lunch and was getting ready for a nap at that time."

http://www.nj.com/monmouth/index.ssf/2015/04/nj_babysitter_accused_of_killing_child_tells_jury.html


Two points jump out at me:

1. The baby had not eaten for 6.5 hours. Why? What had Michelle Heale so preoccupied that she didn't feed him lunch at the normal time? Was he crying out of hunger?

2. What happened between 12:30 and 2:00 p.m? Was the baby fussing and 'refusing' to go to sleep? Did the injury occur earlier, and Michelle Heale try to cover up that she had not fed him, or perhaps stage the incident, by forcing squeezable applesauce down the throat of child who had already suffered head trauma?


She has a lot of supporters on the internet, claiming that she "doesn't appear" to be someone who would commit such terrible acts against a child.

just sayin' said...

According to the article, the babysitter also said she was changing the blankets on her bed so that the baby could sleep there when she claims he started choking.

Is language that introduces bed coverings considered sensitive?

JenB said...

Oh, this is heartbreaking. And I still didn't believe she did it until I read that she hadn't fed him lunch yet at 2 (and it would only be applesauce), and that she had twins of her own in the home too. As a mom of twins, with other children within 2 years on either end, that says it all right there. I see her twins were about 3 when this happened. I remember how difficult and overwhelming some of this days were with a 1 year old and two 3 year olds. And that was the very reason we hardly ever let anyone else care for our kids: it was so hard, and if you didn't really love the kids it would be very difficult not to get overly frustrated.

These poor parents. They trusted her and she outright lied to them - who knows how many times that happened, when their baby was neglected all day long - and then she snapped and killed him.

Anonymous said...

Jen B, I agree; also in my post on 6/27 @5:27 p.m. (ignored in subsequent post), that the babysitter had to have been force feeding the baby rapidly for him to have choked on the applesauce inasmuch as applesauce is finely chopped and is not necessary for a toddler to chew before swallowing. They just need time to swallow.

As you pointed out, it was already 2:00 p.m. and the child had not been fed all day and would have been hungry and fussy for hours by this time. By now she would have been totally agitated with him crying and due to having to care for her own little ones, etc., has her hands full and is going to shove some applesauce down his little throat as quickly as she can and put him to bed. She was frustrated, irritated, aggravated, in a hurry and just wanted her quick feeding of the baby done and over with.

She wasn't giving the child time to swallow the applesauce before she shoved more into his mouth, causing him to gag and choke on it, also causing some of the applesauce to lodge in his windpipe. He was already choking to death by the time she tried to dislodge the applesauce. Grabbing him up and hitting him on his back would cause the applesauce to lodge even further down into his windpipe, when all she could have done at this point was to apply the Heimlich maneuver had she known to do it and not have been in an angry panic with the child.

I don't doubt that in her panic and frustration she jerked him around as hard as she could, causing his little neck and head to snap backwards which led to his death. Whether she meant to kill him or not is irrelevant because this is exactly what she did.

Jen Ow said...

Hi Anon 5:46

I don't believe she was helping him because he was choking on the applesauce. He may have been choking, but I don't believe her actions were meant to help him. That is what she is saying now, as how else would she explain her actions against this defenseless baby?

I agree with everything you said about how choking on applesauce is unlikely, and how he could indeed choke if she was force feeding him. (Or if he was crying, or gulping frantically due to hunger). The thing is, it is not possible to inflict the type of injuries attributed to SBS from rescue actions performed during a choking event, even if she was handling him roughly.

Mason had injuries to his brain, his spine, and his eyes, from being shaken violently, where the brain smashes against the inside of the skull, and optic nerves are torn/ severed, and the brain/spinal cord is dislodged from the spinal column. The injuries Mason had were not caused by a few pounds on the back while choking.

My take is that she was overwhelmed, frustrated, and likely raging. (If he really hadn't eaten for all those hours, and was tired/hungry, he would have been very agitated, crying/screaming.) When she did feed him he was likely frantic, maybe even still crying/hysterical if she was handling him roughly, and he possibly did choke, or vomit, which upset her even more, and she grabbed him and shook him.

Research on SBS shows that the person who was holding the child, or present when the child loses consciousness is the person who shook them, as the extreme damage immediately renders them unconscious.

I'm so sad for Mason's parents. I can't imagine their loss, and their pain knowing that their baby left this world terrorized, and attacked.

Anonymous said...

We are saying essentially the same thing Jew Ow, (and Jen B). just in a different way, while your description of the childs' death is more violent and detailed than mine Jen Ow.

Even if the baby was hysterical and crying by the time she finally got around to feeding him; all she ever had to do was feed the baby the applesauce cautiously and if some did go down into his windpipe, give him the Heimlich maneuver as quickly as she could and it would have dispelled through his mouth. No matter how much she hit the child on the back or jerked and slammed the child around or whatever else she did, she only added to his choking death and other life threatening injuries.

It is rare when hitting someone on the back actually dislodges the object that is obstructing the air flow.

It has been proved repeatedly that hitting someone on the back after they have started choking in most cases only causes the food (or object) to lodge even deeper into the windpipe, cutting off their air flow entirely and quickly. The harder they pound the deeper the windpipe obstruction becomes. It doesn't take much to cut off the air flow to and from the windpipe. After that, everything the babysitter did only created even more severe damage.

In a way I feel badly for the woman as I don't think she actually meant to kill the baby with deliberate intent; but yes, I do believe she was throwing an agitated fit of anger in her impatience with him, for which she will pay for, for the rest of her pitiful life... But these poor parents, Oh how sad. Very very sad.