Rape, hunger and nameless kids at squalid children's home in Mexico
A child playing a ball is seen through a barred window, inside a home known as "La Gran Familia", in the western city of Zamora.
7/18/14 By Lizbeth Diaz of Reuters
ZAMORA Mexico (Reuters) - Children in a squalid home for abandoned and troubled kids run by a controversial mother figure in western Mexico said hunger and regular beatings drove them to offer sex for food and get high by sniffing paint.
Mexican police raided the refuge known as "La Gran Familia" (The Big Family) in the state of Michoacan on Tuesday, finding more than 450 kids in squalid rooms filled with trash and cockroaches.
Many of the children, skinny and listless, described enduring years of abuse at the hands of home administrators including 79-year-old "Mama" Rosa Verduzco, who ran the home in the town of Zamora and has been detained on charges of deprivation of liberty and abuse....
The home was founded in 1947 and provided kids with schooling, workshops and youth orchestras. It received financial backing from individuals, the government and businesses, according to its Facebook page.
Verduzco had won praise from politicians and respected academics for spending more than four decades sheltering children in Michoacan, one of the poorest states in Mexico and ravaged by some of the worst violence in the country's drug war.
But the raid this week revealed filthy conditions at the home....
Some residents described youngsters being raped by a caretaker in a bathroom that was known as "pinocho". Others said they were confined there as a form of punishment....
The allegations could not be independently confirmed but children at the home on Thursday said the abuse drove some kids to seek refuge in drug use, sniffing paint to get high. They faced beatings if they were discovered, they said.
Authorities launched the raid after receiving five complaints from parents who said administrators would not return their children to them. The plan is now to reunite children with their families where possible and find other homes for orphans....
(Reporting by Lizbeth Diaz, Writing by Alexandra Alper; Editing by Kieran Murray)
Appeal by elderly Radisson woman's slayer in satanic killing denied
By AP and Leader-Telegram staff 7/16/14
A state appeals court on Tuesday agreed with the homicide conviction of a man who brutally stabbed a 93-year-old woman to death in northern Wisconsin.
The 3rd District Court of Appeals in Wausau rejected the argument of Christopher L. Roalson of Radisson. He was convicted in 2012 of first-degree intentional homicide in the May 3, 2009, death of Irena Roszak in Sawyer County. Roalson, 32, was sentenced to life in prison without parole.
Prosecutors said Roalson shouted satanic references as he stabbed Roszak while she prayed and begged for her life in her Radisson home. She was stabbed about 15 times.
Investigators said Roalson told them he is the “son of Satan,” and he had a crucifix in his house turned upside down, a sign the devil is “occupied and happy.”....
Davis, 20, was with Roalson at the time of the murder, saying he saw Roalson stab the woman and beat her with a chair. Davis was convicted in 2010 of being party to second-degree intentional homicide. He originally was sentenced to 25 years in prison, but that was reduced to eight years after his testimony.
Walsczak testified Roalson told her about the stabbing three days before the woman’s body was found.
Roalson’s attorney, Tim Provis of Madison, said he would appeal the ruling to the state Supreme Court. State Department of Justice spokeswoman Dana Brueck had no comment. http://m.leadertelegram.com/news/daily_updates/article_cecce74c-0ca7-11e4-8904-001a4bcf887a.html