Children Found Alive In ‘Nailed Boxes’: How You Could Help in Such Situations

Children Found Alive In \'Nailed Boxes\' in Suspected Child Trafficking OperationToday, I use the news story about Children Found Alive in Nailed Boxes in Farmington Missouri from early August 2018 to teach tips that might benefit you. It is not my intention (or my place) to imply anyone involved did anything wrong. And, only the person facing people-danger has enough information to choose the best course of action.

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My Summary and Commentary

Two adults were arrested after it was discovered they were keeping four children (age 6-12) in separate specially constructed rooms. The rooms were basically large boxes without windows or running water. At first it was thought they might be planning to traffic the children. (That means sell them to someone who would use them for an unknown purpose.)

However, that may not be the case. The woman (Laura Cheatham) is the adoptive mother of the children. She is separated from their adoptive father and living with the man who was arrested with her (Daryl Head). Laura recently quit a job with Missouri Department of Corrections. She had ordered “uniforms” for her children from there. He worked as a children’s counselor. Interestingly, he had been asked “not to return” by the school district where Laura Cheatham’s children attended school. As I understand it, he continued to work in other school districts.

The children were rescued by police after someone called the Missouri Child Abuse Hotline. It seems to me the adults were feeling like the children needed, for some reason, to be treated as if they were in jail.

Tips Related to Children Found Alive in Nailed Boxes:

#1 Just Because Someone Has a Good Job, It Doesn’t Mean They Aren’t a Nut-Case

I don’t know how these two crazies found each other, or which one is the craziness leader. She may have thought “he’s a children’s counselor, he’ll be a great influence on my brats.” He may have thought “she has four kids and a government job, she must be a responsible person.” Whichever is the craziness follower is wishing they had been a little slower to get into that relationship.

#2 Get to Know Your Neighbors and Coworkers

There are probably many people who are now wishing they had realized the kids needed rescue at an earlier point. Someone who worked with her at MDOC let the police know she had ordered jail uniforms for her kids after this story broke. Too bad nobody asked more questions about why she wanted the uniforms. Too bad nobody checked on her more after she quit. They may have found out she was struggling to raise her kids in a safe way. Maybe they could have gotten her help. People probably knew him (Head) from his work with school children and may have seen signs he needed help.

#3 You Can’t Entirely Trust Anyone Else with Your Kids Safety

Whether he was the craziness leader or follower, it seems shocking that someone who could even be a party to something like this could be a children’s counselor. Parents should always be open to the possibility that someone an authority has deemed safe to work with kids is actually not.

#4 Never Think Child Abuse is Not Your Business

I know some people claim “child abuse” to get revenge on a person. And, some people are too quick to decide a kid is being abused just because they have a bruise. But, thank goodness someone finally called-in this situation to the child abuse hotline.

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