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Child Abuse, Fundamentalism, Michael and Debi Pearl

Justice for Hana Williams: The Williams plead not guilty

Hana Grace-Rose. Such a beautiful name for a beautiful girl who was forced to endure horrific abuse, which eventually ended her life. But she will not be forgotten, and God willing, justice will be served.

If you are not familiar with this case, I encourage you to read Hana Williams: “Rebellion”or Reaction to Abuse?

Photo from MSNBC.COM

After more than four months of investigation, Larry and Carri Williams, Hana’s adoptive parents, were arrested and each charged with homicide by abuse and assault of a child. The assault charge stems from their treatment of Immanuel, the other child they adopted from Ethiopia.

photo from Komo News

According to MSNBC, “If convicted the couple could face up to 30 years in prison. If released, neither can visit the children or be within 1,000 feet of a school.”

Bail was set at $150,000, reduced from $500,000. They were also barred from having contact with their other children, which were placed in foster care in July. The pretrial hearing is set to start November 3.

Here’s an article from Komo News:

MOUNT VERNON, Wash. – The parents of an adopted girl who died of exposure in her own backyard after she had been starved and abused for months pleaded not guilty to the charges Thursday.

Larry P. Williams and Carri D. Williams of Sedro Woolley were arrested last week and later charged with homicide by abuse and assault of a child in the first degree in Skagit County Superior Court.

Each was ordered held Thursday on $150,000 bail.

According to court documents, the couple’s adopted daughter, Hana Williams, 13, was systematically starved, beaten, forced to use an outdoor toilet and sometimes locked in a dark closet for days by the Williams.

Hana Williams was found dead in May – naked, face-down in the mud in her own backyard – after she had spent much of a cold, rainy day outside as a punishment, according to court documents.

Although she died of hypothermia, there were other contributing causes to her death, including severe malnutrition and chronic gastritis, doctors said.

The Williams had adopted Hana from Ethiopia in 2008 as a diseased little girl to begin a new life in America.

Instead, according to court records, she was beaten, starved, forced to sleep in a barn at times and deprived of love and basic necessities.

 Hana Williams

Child Protective Services said there are reports that Hana had lost a significant amount of weight before her death. And the night she died, she was out in the yard naked on a rainy evening, with temperatures in the low 40s.

Further investigation revealed that Hana had a number of injuries on the night she died, including a large lump on the head, bloody marks and injuries “consistent with disciplinary impacts with a switch,” according to court documents released Friday.

Those same documents describe the hellish life that Hana endured in the months before her death – which included systematic withholding of food, forced times outdoors in the cold or locked in a dark closet, interspersed with regular spankings or beatings with a plumbing tool.

In interviews with the parents and other children in the household, investigators determined that the Williams withheld food from Hana as a punishment for being “rebellious,” court documents say.

In addition, Hana was forced to use an outdoor portable toilet behind the barn instead of the home’s indoor bathroom, and she sometimes was made to take cold showers while naked outdoors under a garden hose, the case file says.

The Williams told investigators that they made Hana use the outdoor toilet because she had hepatitis and they didn’t want any of their other children to become infected with the disease.

Other punishments included locking Hana inside a dark closet for hours or days without food while the parents played the Bible on tape and Christian music for her while she was locked inside, according to court documents.

Hana also was forced to sleep in the barn on some nights or kept outside for hours in the cold without adequate clothing or shoes, court documents say – but she was allowed to wear shoes if there was snow on the ground.

The Williams also confirmed that they used a flexible plumbing tool as a switch to punish Hana and some of the other children in their household.

The children told investigators that Hana sometimes was beaten with a switch for standing more than 12 inches away from where she was told to stand or for speaking without permission.

The Williams’ older biological children were sometimes encouraged to join in administering the punishment by their parents.

A witness told investigators that the Williams got their ideas for the disciplinary measures from a book, “How to Train Up Your Child,” which recommends switchings with a plumbing tool, cold water baths, withholding food and putting children out in cold weather as forms of punishment.

The Williams’ other adopted child, a 10-year-old boy who also was adopted at the same time as Hana, is deaf – and also reportedly showed signs of abuse.

Prosecutors say the first-degree assault accusation against the Williams stems from allegations relating to the boy, who was also from Ethiopia but no relation to Hana.

According to court papers, the Williams also withheld food from the boy at times and switched him regularly – sometimes for not listening to them – even though he was deaf.

After Hana’s death, CPS convinced a judge to pull Hana’s eight brothers and sister – ages seven to 17 – from their Sedro-Woolley home. Those children are all now in temporary foster care. The parents have requested a hearing to fight to get their children back.

Related Posts:

Hana Williams: “Rebellion” or Reaction to Abuse?

Related Links:

Couple accused of starving daughter plead not guilty

Skagit County couple pleads not guilty in death of adopted daughter

Couple pleads not guilty in homicide of adopted daughter

Couple accused of starving daughter plead not guilty



5 thoughts on “Justice for Hana Williams: The Williams plead not guilty

  1. GraceGirl and article in press 10/6/2011 – offering statements from Michael Pearl on Hana’s death. This man and his ministry has to be stopped!

    A direct quote: Pearl now says, if Hana’s parents owned a copy of his book: “It is obvious … that they either have not read it or totally ignored its contents. ** Pearl trying to escape criticism, he is a liar. He is a sociopath, Pearl. Definition of a Sociopath
    Carri and Larry Williams fit as psychopaths – all in the mcafee link.

    Posted by V | October 9, 2011, 12:36 pm
  2. This is horrific! They are monsters and should not be out of jail! They should not have any contact with any child – especially their own! And Michael and Debi Pearl (the authors of the evil book “To Train Up a Child”) should be sitting next to them in jail! When are these two disciples of satan going to be stopped???????

    Posted by mother of 9 beautiful children | October 28, 2011, 6:34 pm
  3. Pearl should also be charged for advocating abuse on children. He says 3 month old babies should be smacked in the name of Jesus. These are not Christian values. Jesus would never behave this way – this is not love. Its plain and simple abuse. How dare they call themselves Christians.
    The Pearl’s should also be investigated and their 19 (1 more on the way) children should be in care with loving parents. May they all rot in hell for killing innocent little Hanna.

    Posted by Dr and Cllr Martin | November 8, 2011, 5:01 pm
  4. When I was pregnant with my last child, I was given that book. I think I made it through the first chapter before getting violently ill. I burned that book s no one would get ahold of that copy. I couldn’t believe anyone would advocate things like that. I am seriously not surprised that someone like them would have been arrested for murder. I remember telling my husband that book would get someone killed. Those poor children… Why would people do this to someone they adopted? For crying out loud, if you don’t want them, don’t adopt!!

    Posted by I'm taking a nap | July 22, 2012, 10:09 am

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