In a story that has gone viral, Jordan Cardella is being touted on the world wide web as stupid. He asked a friend to shoot him so that his ex-girlfriend would feel sorry for him and take him back.
This isn't the first time Cardella asked a friend to injure him in order to obtain sympathy and to manipulate someone.
About ten years ago, Cardella was a child who was the subject of a child welfare case in Walworth County, Wisconsin. I worked on this case. I have observed the outcomes of Jordan's experiences as a direct result of that intervention. The outcomes for Jordan Cardella aren't pretty, but they are typical outcomes that children who are "protected" by the state experience.
Walworth County touted the outcome of their intervention for Jordan Cardella as positive. I disagreed. Readers will note that Jordan is a felon. That is only the tip of the iceberg. Not credible proof of a job well done when one is bragging about the outcomes of child welfare interventions being positive.
This is where I get to say I was right. Again.
Jordan's mother was accused by the father--her ex-husband--of physically abusing Jordan. This was a transparent attempt to have a child support/custody dispute resolved in dad's favor by using child welfare to report mom for abuse and have the children placed with him, and then collect child support from mom. This happens all the time, and one would expect that the professionals who administer these cases could discern when they are being manipulated by parents. . . and children. The professionals in Walworth County demonstrated they do not posses the most basic discernment skills. That includes the bonehead judge, Carlson.
Mom gave Jordan a spanking because he was threatening his older sister with a butcher knife when he was ten years old. Mom was charged with felony child abuse for that spanking. The story garnered international attention. Now, here's the rest of the story. . .
Mom gave the boy twelve swats with her left hand on his bare bottom, one for each year of his age and two to reinforce the lesson. There was no bruising at the time of the spanking. There were half a dozen adult witnesses to the spanking, and none reported that it was excessive or unreasonable.
|Left image filtered to make bruising look worse.|
The district attorney, Phil Koss, insisted that mom caused serious bruising, and even took photos of the boy's bottom. Then he enhanced. . .aw, let's not pull punches, he tampered with the photographic images to make the bruising appear worse. See for yourself. These images come directly from the district attorney's file. The original photos were hidden in the back of the file and fell out right into my lap. (Incidentally, immediately after I filmed this tampered photographic evidence, I was approached by courthouse security officer Hausner who demanded I surrender my video tape. I refused and was arrested. I got the charges (disorderly conduct and obstruction) dropped, sued for false arrest, excessive use of force and more. . . and won. Oh, and I got my tape back. We discovered the tampered evidence several years after the incident.)
Back to the case. . .mom didn't cause that bruising. If you haven't already guessed, I conducted an investigation into this spanking incident and the administration of the child welfare civil case and the criminal case that arose out of that event.
The child welfare agency sided with dad, and recommended that Jordan be taken away from mom and placed with dad. Guardian ad litem, Frank Lettenburger, also sided with placing Jordan with dad, and went to great lengths to have mom convicted. It was a vendetta. But Lettenberger and the caseworker were adamant that the child's best interests were served by placing Jordan with dad, despite the record showing and multiple reports from reliable sources showing dad was a drug user and batterer.
I received reliable reports that dad had coached Jordan to get mom to spank him, Jordan even bragged about it, taunting his mom. Then, out of the blue several years later, one of Jordan's little friends confessed to me that Jordan had told him to spank Jordan with a board to cause bruising. The friend did it, brutally beating Jordan's willing bottom with a board until it was bruised. And plucky little Jordan took the beating like a man. He then told dad mom spanked him, and dad reported it to the police. Mom was arrested and all her children placed in foster care.
Koss used the tampered photographic evidence to coerce a misdemeanor plea bargain out of mom. She never saw the unaltered photos until I went to the courthouse several years later. But, Dad was ultimately charged with perjury arising out of his testimony about this event, and accepted a plea bargain to a lesser charge. Phill Koss was immune from liability for his prosecutorial misconduct. Mom got probation, but Jordan--and society--are the biggest losers.
The dependency court, accepting the recommendations of child welfare and GAL Lettenberger, placed Jordan and his sister with dad. Lettenberger reported to the court that the children "are thriving in their father's home. . .doing well in school. . .have a number of friends, and are working through issue in counseling." The case was closed and nobody ever bothered to follow up on the welfare of the children.
Jordan had learned his lessons well. Oh no, not the lessons his mom tried to teach him about proper conduct, responsibility and obedience, but the lessons his father and the professionals who administer child welfare taught him.
He learned how to use the system to protect him from being corrected. He learned that even when the child lies, the professionals believe the child. His defiance escalated, and he became uncontrollable, engaging in bizarre, violent and dangerous conduct. Why not? He learned that he could tattle to the state if his parents tried to discipline him or correct him. He succeeded in having his way and having his mom thrown in jail when she tried to raise him to be a responsible adult.
When Jordan turned fifteen, dad kicked the little monster he and Walworth County had created out of the house. Under Wisconsin child welfare laws, this constituted abuse and neglect, yet teflon dad never came under the scrutiny of child welfare.
In order to survive on the streets of South Milwaukee, Jordan sold drugs, a skill he had reportedly learned from his dad. His felony conviction was for drugs. I won't even go into the rest of the illegal conduct that surround young Cardella's teenage years, but it was substantial.
This begs the question. . .was that spanking a fork in the road? Would Jordan have turned out differently if Walworth County had not removed him from his mother because she spanked him? What if, instead of punishing mom for correcting Jordan, the state had supported mom?
Certainly, if mom hadn't spanked him, he wouldn't have learned any lesson about not engaging in felony menacing and mom wouldn't have had her children removed and been thrown in jail.
So, spank him and risk being arrested, don't spank him and be held responsible for his crimes because you didn't correct him? Does this sound fair or reasonable? Yet it is so. Parents are responsible for their minor children's criminal and tortious conduct, yet their hands are tied by the state from correcting them effectively.
And what about dad? He is reportedly the laughing stock at work. I say, it couldn't happen to a more deserving guy.
You see, he also falsely reported me for kidnapping his daughter when he had seen into my car and saw she wasn't there. He chased me through the streets of South Milwaukee while I was on the phone to the police. They police--complete with a damned paddy wagon--surrounded me, detained me, stated he had accused me of kidnapping his daughter, and questioned me before letting me leave the scene. So make fun of dad, he deserves it.
But let's not forget those incredible professionals who insured a willfully disobedient boy had no chance to grow up with the proper values and lessons: Judge Carlson, Frank Lettenberger and Walworth County case worker Leslie Mollet--I won't even go into the offensive naked butt checks she did on the kiddies.
All these professionals who walked away patting themselves on the back for a job well done need to know just what they did, don't you think? Make them the same laughing stock that dad is, after all, Jordan is the fruit of their labors.