Jhessye Shockley's Mom Should Be Treated Like She's Guilty

Jhessye ShockleyThe case of missing child Jhessye Shockley has given us one sad and shocking twist at a time. Get ready for one more: Jhessye's mom, Jerice Hunter, has apparently given birth to another child. And Arizona Central is reporting that child protective services in Arizona have already taken the baby girl away, even as police maintain Jerice is not a suspect in her 5-year-old daughter's disappearance.

It sounds an awful lot like Jhessye's mother is being treated as guilty before proven innocent instead of the other way around. But can you really blame the folks in Arizona? This is a baby's life. You don't get a second chance if you don't act immediately.

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The officials investigating Jhessye's disappearance from her Glendale home have been getting a lot of flak for removing the girl's three older siblings from Hunter's custody immediately after the child went missing. It certainly looks strange when you consider that the parents of missing baby Lisa Irwin, Deborah Bradley and Jeremy Irwin, retain custody of their sons despite inconsistencies with Bradley's story of the night their daughter went missing.

But other than having missing kids, the cases are markedly dissimilar.

Irwin was at work when his child went missing. There's no sign he's been a neglectful parent at any turn, regardless of what Bradley may or may not have done.

Hunter, on the other hand, has admitted she left Jhessye home with her older kids when she ran out to run errands. In and of itself, it's not illegal. The oldest of Hunter's kids is 13, average age for babysitting. So Jhessye wasn't left alone, but her siblings were in another part of the house. And that's where things get shaky. Five-year-olds may not have to be watched with an eagle eye, but they need fairly constant supervision

Then consider Hunter's background. She served time in prison for corporal punishment of her children, and the State of California has restrictions on her interactions with her own kids. She was in prison for 3 1/2 of Jhessye's five years on the planet. She may not have had anything to do with her child's disappearance, but the state has tangible evidence that she can be a threat to a minor child.

Whether that means this newborn baby or not, they really don't know. But would you want to risk it?

If Hunter didn't have anything to do with her daughter's disappearance, there's no doubt she's mentally on edge right now. Her child is missing! I'd be batshit! That's not the best situation for a mother of a newborn to give said child optimum care. And on the flip side, if she did have something to do with Jhessye disappearing, who would want her around other children?

Do you think child protective services did the right thing?


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