This story just appeared in the Athens Banner Herald in Clark County, Ga. Wendy Osborn was the foster mother who had Baby Jessica – she didn’t take the baby out of a hot van, but she removed her three year old twins. Jessica died. Wendy is from Jackson County, Ga and Jessica had been snatched by Jackson County DFCS. Jessica’s mother and father have lost their only child – allegedly two days before they were to get her back from Jackson County DFCS. I say allegedly because Jackson County DFCS does not do reunifiction. If they indeed told the family this story in all probablity they lied to cover their tracks.
Jackson County DFCS, the caseworker, the supervisor and all involved in this case should be held accountable in the murder of this child. It was no accident, it was neglect pure and simple.
What I find interesting in this article is the Public Defender Crandell Heard is also my daughter Alice Samantha Thomason’s public defender. He also should be held accountable because if he worked this case like he is working Samantha’s case then he is a culpable. He is just as responsible for the death of this child.
If the natural parents had been the ones who left the baby in the hot van, they would not have been able to plea to such a sweet deal. This is a miscarriage of justice. Ms. Osborn still have her children, she still has a life. The parents of little Jessica have lost everything. They were not even told of her death until sixteen hours after the baby died. The question is WHY?? They had already lost her to the greed, corruption and abuse of Jackson County DFCS, and then they lost her forever, and weren’t told until hours later.
My daughter Alice Samantha Thomason and her children, Autumn Destiny DeShawna, Sara Luvelle Texanna and Carly are in the same situation. Crandell Heard is Samantha’s public defender, Shawna, Sara and Carly are sitting in foster care and the charges are bogus. The abuse by Jackson County DFCS which includes Katie Bice, Mary Mahoney, Crandell Heard and the Foster Mother Donna is absolutly deplorable. Does there have to be another death before these kids are returned to their mother Samantha and she is their only mother, Donna is not. She is just a person who is holding these children hostage.
This is a travesty, it is criminal and it is wrong on every level. Donna Osborn is not the only one who has to be held accountable. There are others.Probation in death of foster child
By Merritt Melancon – firstname.lastname@example.org
Published Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Buzz up!JEFFERSON – A Jackson County Superior Court judge sentenced former foster mother Wendy Osborne to 12 months of probation Monday in the 2008 death of 9-month-old Jessica Scovil.
Wendy Osborne reacts Monday in Jackson County Superior Court after pleading guilty to one count of misdemeanor involuntary manslaughter for leaving foster daughter Jessica Scovil in a minivan in 2008.
Wendy Osborne reacts Monday in Jackson County Superior Court after pleading guilty to one count of misdemeanor involuntary manslaughter for leaving foster daughter Jessica Scovil in a minivan in 2008. Osborne left Jessica in the family’s minivan for more than two hours on the afternoon of Sept. 2, 2008, and the child died of heat stroke.
Jessica’s birth parents were only days from reclaiming custody of the girl when she died, according to family members.
“We were told that we would be bringing Jessica home in two days,” Georgia Nichols, Jessica’s grandmother, told the court Monday. “Her parents took all the tests and did every single thing they were asked to do. It was almost over. We were not even notified (about Jessica’s death) for 16 hours, and then we were told she had been in an accident.
“A year and a half later, (Osborne is) taking responsibility,” Nichols continued. “Never once in all this time has she ever attempted to apologize to any of us. How can that be? Who is this person?”
Charged with involuntary man-slaughter and reckless conduct, Osborne pleaded guilty to a single count of misdemeanor involuntary manslaughter. In addition to the probation, she also must complete 200 hours of community service and pay a $1,000 fine.
Osborne returned home from a doctor’s appointment shortly before 3 p.m. that day and took her two adopted 3-year-old girls into the family’s Nicholson-area home. Once inside, Osborne lay down for a nap while the other two children played.
She woke up about 5 p.m. and rushed outside to find Jessica unresponsive in her car seat.
Jessica was dead by the time paramedics arrived.
“I will never understand how anyone could leave a 9-month-old baby in a hot van to die,” Nichols said before Osborne was sentenced. “Just today, these words put the most horrible pictures in my head. Her body temperature is 108 (degrees) at the hospital. I can’t imagine what it was like in the van.”
Jessica’s parents, Evelyn Carter and Robert Scovil, lost custody of their daughter because state Division of Family and Children Services officials didn’t think they were able to take care of her. There never were any allegations of abuse, drug use or any other criminal behavior on their part, the couple’s attorney, Crandall Heard, said after Jessica died.
The birth parents did not receive enough notice to attend court Monday, Nichols said. They have split up since their daughter’s death, and both moved out of state, she said.
Osborne, now 31, and her husband, Chris Osborne, had fostered several Jackson County children before Jessica. They had two teenage foster daughters and two adopted children living with them at the time of the girl’s death.
The couple was dedicated to taking care of the children in their custody, according to witnesses who spoke on Osborne’s behalf Monday.
“I can’t imagine that any punishment you can give her can be worse than what she’s already been through,” Osborne’s pastor, the Rev. Kent Barry, told the judge before sentencing. “She deals with this every day. She still has her two (5-year-olds) to care for, and when she looks at them, she can’t help but see Jessica.”
Osborne, who had been ill for about a week the day Jessica died, was on medication that made her extremely drowsy, Chris Osborne testified.
“If I could go back to that day, I would have never left there,” he said, speaking to the court and to Nichols. “(Wendy Osborne) had been sick for a week. I asked her if I should stay home, and she said, ‘No’; it was just a cold. … I should have went home, but I didn’t. I can’t take that day back, but I want to apologize to you.”