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The cases below are from the ninties, however, tragedies like these are happening today and will continue to happen as long as those in charge of child protection continue to fail the children.
Judges are too often persuaded by the defense that the accused is the victim.  Judges are accepting what the defense states as fact without proof and often fail to allow the prosecution to even present evidence to prove their case and to disprove the defense.  One can hardly prove beyond a reasonable doubt one's case when one is not allowed to present evidence.
Many time an accused claims to have been falsely accused and presents no evidence to validate that claim which is actually accusing the reporter of a crime.  The courts too often will dismiss a case or find for the defense claiming it to be a case of parental alienation syndrome (which is not recognized by the medical or psychiatric associations)  or that the accused was falsely accused. 
The person who in good faith made the report of child abuse is sanctioned and considered to have made a false report without benefit of a trial.  Making a false report is a crime.
The two cases below  while different do show that Judges errors cost children their lives.  Yes, this is still happening today as you can see on many of the state pages.
With trevor, the medical evidence and tesitimony was there and the mother was following the proper treatment for her son.  While it was a very serious charge, the judge's error cost the child his life at a very young age. 

There are somethings which defy logic such as when courts and judges are so biased in their thinking or actions that children are seriously harmed.  When a judge puts his or her ego above the welfare of a child than the public should consider that judge be forced to resign. 
When a judge's decision means life or death, there is no room for ego and or mistakes.  Life is fragile.  A child is precious and this country needs to defend the children.

Trevor Nolan

Born: May 10, 1991
Died: April 12, 1997

Breaking Update: Dale Awarded $800,000

Trevor was born with a fatal metabolic disorder, Glycogen Storage Disease type 1d. Trevor was fortunate, his mother was an emergency medical technician and Trevor was doing well, but his parents were getting a divorce.

During the custody battle that ensued, the court appointed a family counselor, Cynthia Stout of Glendale, CA. Dale believes that being in a small town and with the father's family political connections, the cards were stacked against her. With an accusation of Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy, Child-Protective Services took Trevor and his older brother, Wade into "protective custody". It didn't matter that Trevor's physicians who had known the mother and child throughout Trevor's life, disagreed with the diagnosis of MSBP. Reportedly, Trevor's father had attempted suicide 3 weeks prior to the MSBP accusation and was diagnosed as a schizophrenic. Still, Trevor and his older brother were placed into foster care.

Trevor's disorder required continuous feeds during the night and small frequent meals throughout the day to keep his blood sugar stable. Because of this, Trevor had a tube that was threaded down through his nose and into his stomach. After being put into a foster home and with the assumption that Trevor was being kept ill by his mother, CPS authorized the removal of his nasogastric tube for daytime feeds. They needed to do this in order to "prove" that Dale was responsible for keeping her child ill. Trevor was neutropenic and nightly replacement of the nasogastric tube can cause serious infections.

Ten days later, Trevor went into hypoglycemic shock and coma. Trevor died shortly after being airlifted to a hospital in Reno, Nevada. Dale had been told that he was fine and would be sent home in two days and that she was "not to hold a vigil over his hospital bed," as she had done in the past. Dale complied, hoping not to further fit the profile, only to receive a call that she better get up to the hospital quick. When she arrived, Trevor was already gone.

Child Protective Services has not released Dale's older son Wade, back to her custody and now contends that Wade was neglected due to all the care that Trevor received. A custody hearing was scheduled for Sept 97.

Dale Nolan
315 South Hobson
Mesa, AZ 85204

Mom to get $800,000 in 1997 death of son:
State, Mono County agree to pay

By Cynthia Hubert Bee Staff Writer
Published Oct. 7, 1999
The Sacramento Bee

Mono County and the state of California have agreed to pay more than $800,000 to a woman who claimed government agencies were responsible for her son's death after they removed him from her care more than two years ago.

Trevor Nolan, who was 5 years old and suffered from a rare blood disease, died at a Reno hospital in April 1997, less than three weeks after the county's Child Protective Services removed the boy from his mother's custody.

CPS turned Trevor and his brother Wade, then 6, over to their father and later to foster parents as they investigated allegations that she deliberately kept the younger boy sick. Trevor, who suffered from an illness called glycogen storage disease that required him to be fed from a tube from infancy, died as his mother was driving to visit him.

No charges of abuse or neglect ever were substantiated against the mother, Dale Nolan-Dissell.

Nolan-Dissell sued in federal court in Sacramento, charging the wrongful death of Trevor and wrongful removal of the two boys. She charged that CPS, the foster parents and her former husband were negligent in the boy's care after he was taken from his mother.

Without admitting liability, Mono County and its CPS employees recently agreed to settle the case for $700,000, according to public documents. The foster parents, through the state, agreed to a settlement of $125,000, and the child's father, Ed Nolan, from whom the mother is divorced, agreed to pay an undisclosed amount. The settlements are to be paid by the parties' insurance companies, said William Baber, Nolan-Dissell's lawyer.

Justin Tierney Jr., who represented Mono County in the case, said the government decided to settle to protect the agency from a potentially larger jury verdict in the future. The case was scheduled to go to trial in April 2000.

"The facts are that the boy was removed, he had a rare disorder and he died within three weeks of removal," Tierney said. "A jury would have a difficult time seeing beyond that, despite the fact that we believe the county acted properly."

Ed Nolan declined to comment Wednesday on the settlement. A representative for the state in the case could not be reached.

Nolan-Dissell, who lives in Arizona, said she intends to fight for full custody of her older son. Wade Nolan, now 9, has been living with his father in Bridgeport, she said, and she has seen him under supervision once a month.

"They can't bring Trevor back to me, but I want Wade back," Nolan-Dissell said Wednesday in an interview from her home in Phoenix. "I'm not bitter. I just want the rest of the error corrected."


When Eric Eubanks warned a San Diego County judge his wife Susan had threatened to kill their four chilren; the judge, in a classic display of shooting the messenger, immediately sentenced Eric to Superised Visitation. The reason? The judge was worried Eric was attempting to alienate the children from their mother.

After Susan Eubanks shot her four sons, ages 14, 7, 6 and 4, to death, (ignoring her nephew who was present at the time), the judge promptly sealed the file to protect herself from bad press. Eubanks received the death penalty. The judge? The media did not identify her.

Oct. 14, 1999
Judge OKs Death for Woman Who Killed 4 Sons
Victims' Grandmother: I Have No Sympathy

With tears in her eyes and loud sniffles, a woman who shot her four young sons to death urged a judge to spare her life Wednesday. She failed. A Superior Court judge agreed with a jury's recommendation and sentenced Susan Eubanks, 35, to death in California's gas chamber. 

Outside the courthouse in this San Diego suburb, the grandmother of one of the boys told reporters that she had no sympathy for Eubanks. "She's still playing the ultimate victim. She still somehow is clinging to the hope that the 'ultimate victim' will get her off," Sally Armstrong said. "It always has. I don't think it's dawned on her that this is it."  

Eubanks, 35, killed her sons in October 1997 at her home in San Marcos, a suburb north of San Diego. She shot each of her sons in the head then shot herself in the stomach. She was hospitalized for several weeks; the children died instantly. The sons killed were Brandon Armstrong, 14, and Austin, Brigham and Matthew Eubanks, who were 7, 6 and 4, respectively. Eubanks blamed the shooting on a number of factors including her dependency on drugs and bad relations with her family. 

In September, a jury recommended that she be sentenced to death. On Wednesday, Eubanks urged Superior Court Judge Joan Weber to show her mercy. Eubanks said she was a normal person who cracked. "I wasn't any different than any of you, than anybody else," the former nurse's assistant told the court. "I worked in a job I loved. I paid taxes. I had the house, the family, the animals, the minivan." But then her life fell apart, and she feared separation from her children. "On that night, in my mind, it was better to be together in death than be apart in life," she said. "In my fear and despair, the unthinkable seemed reasonable to me. 

Weber was not impressed and called the killings the single worst criminal act in the history of San Diego County. The county, home to 2.6 million people, has been the scene of several high-profile crimes, including the 1984 massacre of 21 people at a McDonald's restaurant near the U.S.-Mexico border. After the court hearing Wednesday, a somber group of people gathered at the property where the killing occurred to plant roses in memory of the boys. Those attending included relatives, friends, the prosecutor in the case and jurors who recommended that Eubanks be put to death.


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