Articles


MAY 2017 MESSAGE FROM MARY
THOUGH THIS IS A MAY MESSAGE, WE WILL CONTINUE TO HONOR VICTIMS OF CRIMES FROM APRIL, VICTIMS RIGHTS’ MONTH

The Greater Portland Area Chapter is continuing to reach out to other organizations to honor victims of crimes and thank the organizations that help victims and co-victims of homicide. It is because of their help that we able to have rights for victims and co-victims of homicide. The National Crime Victim Law Institute--www.ncvli.org--a national nonprofit based in Oregon--has especially honored all victims, on an upcoming event held at UPTOWN Market located at 3970 SW Mercantile Drive, Lake Oswego, OR. This event will be held on April 29, 6-8:00pm. The proceeds generated that evening will benefit The National Crime Victim Law Institute, NCVLI. NCVLI is a national nonprofit based in Oregon that supports low and no cost legal services for victims of crime to protect their rights.

We at POMC are especially grateful to NCVLI for not only helping us with our rights, but they also come every year to read the names of our loved ones for “National Remembrance of Homicide Victims” on September 25. They honor our loved ones each year by the respect and care they show in reading their names. It is also an honor to know that it is important to them to take the time to bring their members to our event with their busy schedule. (Please see their flyer in this month’s newsletter.)

As POMC members if you are able, we will showing that we appreciate their help and support if we can attend or if possible send a donation to The National Crime Victim Law Institute. Their website is listed above and their address is National Crime Victim Law Institute, 310 SW 4th Avenue, Suite 540, Portland, OR 97204. It is with their help that we can help others who are thrust in this unbelievable role as a co-victim of homicide. Victims’ rights are their focus and since we are the voices for victims of homicide, it is imperative for us to have their support and so appreciated. You can also donate by phone. Please call Scott Flor at 503-768-6958. If you like, you can mention POMC so they know how much we appreciate them.

There is going to be TV coverage for the NCVLI fundraiser (geared in large part at raising public awards by promoting the event and NCVLI). A child abuse survivor whom owns Hero Sub Sandwiches Franchises in part sponsors the event.) Tara Lawrence, Lawrence Law Firm, has also joined in helping with this event.

As your representative, I am humbled to add that they are also recognizing four people who work on behalf of victims: Senator Betsy Johnson, DA Josh Marquis, Mary Elledge (POMC), and Ruth Wariner (author and survivor of child abuse). (To me though, it is all of you who should have your name listed for POMC.)

In addition, I would like to add that it is an honor to represent POMC. It is all of you who are the true heroes. I will never forget how hard it was to just get up in the morning and face another day. Nor will I ever forget the playing of the murder scenario in my mind (over and over again) or the ache in my heart from the murder of my son. Consequently, I will be also honoring all of you. It is all of you who come, help, and care that make our organization work. I want to acknowledge all of you—for you are my heroes. I would not be here without all of you nor would I have ever made a new normal.

I am sending all of my love, understanding, and sympathy to all of you. I would also like to thank the POMC Board and all of the members who help us in what we do so we can help others. It takes all of us to do this. I always tell people that co-victims of homicide make the best friends in the world. Their priorities are in the right place. They don’t worry about little things. They know what one of the worst things in the world is.

All my love, Mary Elledge


TO HONOR VICTIMS OF HOMICIDE BY REMEMBERING THE OREGON/WASHINGTON CHAPTER WILL BE HONORING DEAN CHARLES CROSSON

It is truly an honor to tell the story of Dean Charles Crosson. Dean was brutally murdered on June 6, 2007 in Portland, Oregon. Dean, a Canadian resident, came down from Canada to see his ill mother-in-law. After his visit, he would go to Portland and help the homeless. He also brought his tent and food to feed anyone he might meet who was hungry. Dean was the youngest son of the Crosson family. He was 37 years old. His family has suffered an unthinkable loss and life change.

This young man died helping others less fortunate. His mother, Shirley Crosson, wrote the following article:

On June 7, 2002, I arrived home from work and my husband told me that the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) had been to our house to tell us Dean had been murdered in Portland, Oregon. The shock and horror of this news still reduces me to tears today. My husband had served in the R.C.M.P. for 33 years and I cannot even begin to tell you how devastating this news was for both of us. We immediately contacted the police and DA’s office to get more information. After arriving in Portland, our son had found a quiet, secluded spot to set up his campsite away from any busy areas where he could explore and enjoy Portland once again and help the homeless in any way possible. On June 6, 2007, two other men appeared where he was with his tent. As was Dean’s way, he invited them to share the space and helped them set up their tent. Both men had been drinking all day and were intoxicated. Dean was listening to his tapes and invited Mr. Oswald to come and listen to them with him. Calvin Stubblefield stayed by himself by his tent. After some time, Mr. Oswald told Dean that he wanted to get some more beer to drink and left the area. After he left the horror began. Calvin Stubblefield attacked Dean at some point smashing the back of his head with a boulder, stabbing him with a pocketknife that he had in his backpack on his chest and forearm, and finally dealing him a horrific blow by severing the carotid artery in his neck with deep gashes. Mr. Stubblefield stands 6’ 6’’ at 200 pounds to Deans 5’10” at 160 pounds. Caught by surprise, Dean was unable to defend himself.

Calvin Stubblefield knew that Mr. Oswald would be a witness against him so he walked one and one-fourth miles with his bloody clothes and knife to the police station and told them Dean had attacked him. He said that he just defended himself. He took them back to the area where they found Dean on the ground dead. It was not long before the police found that Stubblefield was the aggressor. He was charged with murder and promptly applied for bail. Though dealing with overwhelming shock and grief, my husband and I were asked to come down to the bail hearing by the DA. We made the 8-hour journey and endured hearing all of the horror our son had gone through at this man’s hands. Before we could go through the doors of the courtroom, we were served with subpoenas for the DEFENSE. I do not know about the laws in the United States but in Canada, it is unheard of to do this to the parents of a murder victim. The extreme stress of trying to get some justice for our son took a devastating toll on my husband and myself. We had both raised our children to respect the law and justice would prevail, however, to our and our children’s horror we found this was not the case for Dean. The stress and pain took its toll on my husband’s health and a month before Calvin Stubblefield was to go to trial a cancerous tumor was found on my husband’s bowel. It was removed and when he came out of surgery, we had a phone call from the district attorney telling us that Stubblefield had entered a plea bargain and would we accept it. When I asked my husband what he wanted to do he said, “Accept it! It won’t bring Dean back and at least it will get this monster off the streets.”

Mr. Stubblefield was sentenced to ten years in a mental institution. If that were the end of the agony for our family, it would have been enough. Yet, every three months or so, he would apply to the Psychiatric Security Review Board for early release or some special concession. To our horror, he got everything he asked for even though we wrote countless letters and spoke to them by phone stating how wrong this was. For four years, we fought for justice for Dean in a system that takes very special care to look to all of the prisoners’ rights while ignoring any of the victims’ rights or the family’s rights.

After four years of fighting for some justice for dean, my husband’s cancer came back vigorously. He was diagnosed with Leukemia and had two weeks to two months to live. He fought on for eight months before passing away. NOW CALVIN STUBBLEIFIELD HAS 2 VICTIMS WHICH HE WILL NEVER PAY THE PRICE FOR. We have stated over and over again to the review board that this man has a long history of violent behavior and he will kill again when he is released. In fact, it was just brought out that he had spent five years in a mental hospital in California before coming to Oregon. HOW MANY MORE VICTIMS HAVE TO DIE AT HIS HANDS? My family and my pain goes on without Dean and all of the joy and love we enjoyed with him. Our lives will never be the same again. I spend many hours re-reading the many letters he sent me over the years and remembering all of his many gifts of love that he shared with so many he met on his too short of a life. I leave you with the last letter that arrived in my mailbox from Dan two years after his death as I sat weeping for him. I want you to see what a wonderful loving man he was and how horrible his murder was. Right now, we worry that Stubbleifield will murder another person after he is released.

Love from, Dean’s mother, Shirley Crosson.


A LETTER FROM DEAN CROSSON TO HIS FAMILY

My heart overflows with joy at this time and I cannot thank the Lord, my God, enough for all the Grace He has abounded unto me wherever I have gone. Right now, I am writing to you nestled amongst some cedar trees by Westwood Lake just above Nanaimo. A redheaded woodpecker recently was on the tree right beside me. When I first got over here the morning after I arrived, while resting on the seashore, an Osprey (like the one we use to see on the old $10.00 bills) flew right in front of me. A person may see many eagles but, and an Osprey is quite rare.

Another day, I was relaxing in a beautiful place just outside a town called “Cedar”, (where I had the best fish and chips of my life) along the Nanaimo River right in front of me a Loon (like on the $1.00 coin) casually swam passed me. After, an otter caught a fish in the river and ate it swimming along in front of me. I then went over to Gabriola Island. Wow, what a beautiful and wonderful place. The people were so kind and friendly. I have been enjoying the most wonderful and magnificent time of my life at this time when I am over the islands. For God has provided perfectly for me everywhere.

The world is a much poorer and empty place when a beautiful life is taken away.
Shirley Crosson.


INSTRUCTIONS FOR GETTING YOUR LOVED ONES’ PICTURE ON OUR MEMORIAL BOARD

For our “Holiday Memorial on December 5th, if we do not have a picture of your loved one already, please mail or e-mail it to: Pat Schwiebert at 2116 N. E. 18th Street, Portland . OR 97212. Her e-mail is: pat@tearsoup.com. Pat needs the pictures as soon as possible so she can include them in our slide show. Your loved one’s name will be read out loud even if we do not have a picture on our board.

We are so grateful to Pat and her family at “The Peace House”, where we hold our meetings. They spend hours decorating their home so it is beautiful for our holiday memorial. For many, this time is the most special day they have during the holiday season since the murder of their loved one. It is a safe place to be.

Thank You


POMC IS NOW RECEIVING DONATIONS
FROM GO FUND ME
OREGON POMC MEMORIAL WALL

On behalf of the Greater Portland Area Chapter of Parents of Murdered Children, I would like to express our deepest appreciation to all of the generous people who have donated to the building of our addition memorial wall. We have a beautiful POMC Memorial now and families and friends from all over Oregon and Washington come to honor the memory of their loved ones who were so brutally taken from them. Sadly to say, our wall is completely filled. We have 500 names engraved on it.

What we are planning to do when we have enough funds is to build an additional wall that will hold 1000 more names. We have so many families who are waiting to add their loved ones’ name. It means so much to them because one of our greatest fears as a co-victims of homicide is that our loved one will not be remembered. They did not get to live the life they were suppose to. Some of the names on our wall belong to little babies to any age of adult. As co-victims, we have all suffered the same loss, the loss of a loved one to homicide. Our lives were completely changed. Homicide cannot be resolved.

What is also important is that we also educate the public when people come to see our wall. Murder can happen to any family. If people see the amount of people who are murdered, they will realize how important protection of society truly is. We need a justice system that works and laws for the protection of society. At POMC, we wish that people would never need our services. Sadly to say, we are getting more calls each day.

Co-victims of homicide need the peace and tranquility we are able to achieve at our POMC Memorial Wall. We are surrounded by beautiful sequoia trees, running water from the memorial, flowers, verses engraved on the stones that stand tall by the wall and a serenity that gives them hope and a place to gather and see that they are not alone.
We again ask for your help and thank those who have been so generous to our cause. If you would like to help, please go to the website of “Go Fund Me” and look under “POMC Memorial Wall”. All donations are appreciated and tax deductible. So many of our members are waiting to add their loved one’s name to the wall. Oregon has the largest POMC Memorial in the United States. Thank you for your help.


FUNDING FOR THE NEW MEMORIAL WALL IS NOW IN FULL FORCE

Funding for our new POMC Oregon/Washington Wall officially began this January, 2015. Members and friends of our chapter have been generous with donations and we are so thankful. Many of our new members are waiting for their loved ones names to be put on our new wall. We are listing new names that will be engraved when the wall is completed. We ask that members will call us, e-mail, or mail the information if you do not see your loved ones name on the list. The phone number is 503-656-8039, the e-mail is: elledge1@gmail.com or POMC, 14427 S. Forsythe Road.

We are designing the wall now and hoping to build a wall that will accommodate more names than the existing wall. We want to list all of our loved ones

If any of our members work at a company or know of anyone who would like to make a donation please let us know or it is fine for you to ask for a donation yourself. We are a non-profit organization. Donations are tax deductible. Please use the phone contact numbers from the first paragraph of this article. Thank you so much for your support.

LIST OF NAMES TO BE ENGRAVED ON THE NEW MEMORIAL WALL UPON COMPLETION

Aisha Collins
Amber Rhiannon Adams
Ashley Benson
Austin Joe Hrynko
Benjamin Redmond
Braylon Michael Duguay
Charlie Peralta
Cheritee Yvonne Vance
Cheryl Elizabeth Hart
Christopher James Loftus
Coltin Jacob Salsbury
Coulton McComb-Buehler
Craig C. Moritz Jr.
Dale Archie Brown
David Rothrock
David G. Swapp Jr.
Dean A. Kuntz
Devan Chanel Schmidt
Diego Aguilar
Douglas Oliver Benton
Glen Edward Drysdale
Harold Sloan Blanchard
Izaak Gillen
Jason Dale Johnson
Jason Michael Ell
Jason Scott Williams
Jayme Sue Austin
Jeffery Towers
JefferyRay Brown
Jessica Lynn Clark
Jodi Marie Brewer
Joseph Ben Peterson
Julio Cesar Marquez Jr.
Kathleen Lois Bauman
Kayla Ann Hendrickson
Kaylee Anne Sawyer
Keith Ardell Benefield
Kenneth Dylan Lambert
Krystal Jaye Mitchell
Kyle William Peckham
Laura Jean Bohlen
London Grey McCabe
Marcos Juan Castillo
Molly Irene McCarter
Nicolas Lamont Lawson
Nicolette Naomi “Nikki” Elias
Paul W. Miller
Rachelle “Shelly” Law
Randall Leo Gettman
Raymond Lee Meyers
Rebekah “Becky” Selegue Johnson
Ryan Robert Jones
Sahara Grace Dwight
Steve Leroy Johnson
Thomas James Fite
William Roland Hatch III

(Please contact us if your loved one’s name does not appear on this paper and you would like to have it added. A form will be added to our newsletter each month to be used for adding names for the wall when it is completed. Please check the spelling of your loved one’s name and let us know if it is wrong. You can e-mail us at elledge1@gmail.com, call 505-656-8039, or mail us at POMC, 14427 S. Forsythe Rd., Oregon City, OR 97045.)

MEMORIAL DONATIONS FOR NEW WALL

ELEANORE B.
UNITED AIRLINES THROUGH THE EFFORTS OF ROBERT P.


BETH GREEAR PUTS SUPPORT GROUP FOR POMC MEMBERS ON FACEBOOK

The Greater Portland Chapter is proud to announce that Beth Greear has created a facebook support group for POMC members. To reach it use: www.facebook.com/groups/POMC.Portlalnd.Vancouver/ Beth said that there are several “admins” of the page so she is sure it will be very beneficial to anyone who would like to use it.

We cannot thank her enough for the chance to have even more support for our members. Beth is an outstanding person who is always there to reach out to help others. She even brought a delicious dessert for our December holiday meeting. We will be writing more on this next month and giving the names of other members who are helping with this project.


LIVING WITHOUT JUSTICE

Unsolved Homicides ~ A CoVictims’ Worst Nightmare

The murder of a loved one is the most horrific thing a person can experience.  The only thing that can make it worse is a substandard initial investigation or not seeing justice in your case.  Timely collection of evidence followed by an arrest and conviction would provide a degree of comfort, but what happens to co-victims when a thorough investigation is not done, and there is no arrest?  Many of the victims' friends and acquaintances will gradually let go of their grief over time, but the closest of friends and family will remain in a state of sorrow, haunted by the injustice of investigators that may not have conformed to rules or standard operating procedures during their initial investigation.  Not only is there no relief, but the agony of the event changes their lives forever, and becomes part of their very being.  Co-victims' everyday battle becomes their effort to get a thorough investigation.

Helplessness is a gut-wrenching emotion which plagues co-victims who are not allowed to assist with the investigation and are longing for justice.  We don't want to let our loved one down; we are compelled to fight for justice no matter how long it takes.  As the process drags on, frustration grows.  Many times, due to confidentiality, important conversations between co-victims and law enforcement are avoided, and this lack of communication can cause co-victims to feel neglected and disrespected, which often manifests itself in frustration, anger, and a loss of confidence in the investigators. Regular contact and truthfulness are two of the most important things survivors need from law enforcement. We need investigators to focus on routine communication of as much information as possible with sensitivity and without being misleading. Survivors’ perception that information is not being shared with them can result in them feeling they have been secondarily victimized. As the years pass, co-victims start wondering if their unsolved homicide could be reviewed by a fresh set of eyes, and they often look into getting their case to a cold case unit, only to find out that some jurisdictions don't even have a cold case unit.   If there is a cold case unit in their jurisdiction, cases are evaluated and chosen according to a set of criteria.  Co-victims whose cases seem to be continuously passed over for review become dismayed and even angry toward law enforcement. Anger can mobilize psychological resources for corrective action, but uncontrolled anger can negatively affect personal or social well-being. 

Co-victims who put forth the effort to examine and understand the cold case process and various factors which must be dealt with during cold case investigations are able to put the process into perspective.  They must understand that cold cases are among the most difficult and frustrating cases for both co-victims and law enforcement, and not every case is chosen to be investigated.  It helps to review the following criteria checklist used by the National Sheriff’s Association, Justice Solutions and POMC: 

Complete an application for cold case review. This application includes detailed information regarding agency reports, victimology, suspects/persons of interest, timeline, coroner, lab reports, investigation documents, weapon descriptions and media releases.  

Co-victims should also be aware that closing rates can be more successful if investigators work only one or two cases at a time.  At this point, if we find out that our case doesn’t qualify for review by a cold case unit, our only hope is that a thorough re-investigation will be done by homicide investigators. 

If you have comments or questions about this article, please email: pat.kuiper@yahoo.com or call Pat Kuiper at 702-809-8654 to get your loved ones' name listed in our newsletter.  Feel free to contact Pat if you would like to share your story. 

UNSOLVED CASES

Lucy Eilertson (1998)
Diana Moffitt (1987)
Donald James Brown (2007)
Kimberly Larson Reames (1983)
William (Bill) Mark Stratton (2005)


SIBLING SITE IS LAUNCHED

The Greater Portland Chapter is so proud of our member, Amanda Harris, for launching her official site for siblings. Amanda is offering the Website: www.unitingsiblings.com so that sibling co-victims of homicide have a place to go where they will be understood and supported. This site will include video, chat, and telephone conference via a secure and private interface. Amanda is paying for the expenses and will be delighted to be another support for sibling co-victims. Amanda can also be reached at: Amanda@unitingsiblings.com or 623-866-3189.

Amanda Harris is now ready to start her web site for siblings. The Portland Chapter is excited about the support and understanding this new group will be for the many often overlooked survivors.


NATIONAL POMC SURVIVORS NEWSLETTER SUBSCRIPTION FORM

Please find, enclosed, $10.00 for my annual subscription (three issues) for the Survivors Newsletter.
(Please consider adding an extra subscription fee to help defray the cost for someone who cannot afford it.)

NAME: _____________________________________________________________________________

ADDRESS: __________________________________________________________________________

CITY, STATE, ZIP____________________________________________________________________

MAIL TO: POMC, INC. ENCLOSED IS MY: CHECK _________________

100 E. EIGHTH STREET, B-41 MONEY ORDER__________

CINCINATTI, OH 54202

Download form here


PERMISSION FOR ENGRAVING OF NAMES FOR POMC’S OREGON/WASHINGTON MEMORIAL WALL

PRINTED NAME OF LOVED ONE_________________________________________ (This will be engraved on the wall)

LOVED ONE’S BIRTHDATE____________________________ DEATH DATE____________________________

MEMBER/FRIEND’S NAME AND ADDRESS ____________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________________________________

MEMBER/FRIEND’S PHONE NUMBER_____________________________ Do you want a Newsletter? Yes No

SIGNATURE FOR PERMISSION TO
ENGRAVE NAME AND SPELLING APPROVAL_________________________________________________________

Please submit one form for each loved one. Please make efforts with other family members/friends to ensure multiple requests are not received for the same name. When completed, please mail, fax, or e-mail to the following places: POMC, Mary Elledge, 14427 S. Forsythe Road, Oregon City, OR 97045 or fax 503-656-4420, or e-mail: elledge1@email.com. If you have any questions, please call 503-656-8039.

Download form here


Oregon-Washington Public Memorial Garden
Remembering Those We Have Lost to Murder
CONTRIBUTION OR PLEDGE FORM

Please Complete and Return to Memorial Garden,
POMC 14427 S. Forsythe Rd Oregon City, OR 97045

100% of Contributions are Tax Deductible

Name:____________________________________________ phone: __________________________

Address:_____________________________________________________________________________

__________________________________________________________________________________________

E-MAIL: ___________________________________________________

Options :

Gift in Memory of: __________________________________________________________

Anonymous gift (will not be recognized at the Memorial Garden or in published materials)

Method of Payment:

Check Enclosed

Credit Card #_________________________________________Exp Date:___________

Name on Card _________________________________________________________________

Signature _____________________________________________________________________

Pledged Payment (to be completed by December 31, 2014)
Please add notes on payment timing _________________________________________

Thank you for helping to create the Oregon-Washington Public Memorial Garden. Your generosity will never be forgotten.

Download form here


Tacoma Violent Crime Victim Services Welcomes Homicide Survivors

Peer Support Group Meeting

If someone you love has been the victim of a homicide, we invite you to attend our monthly support group meeting. You will find acceptance, compassion and support.

Place: United Way Building
3rd FLOOR CONFERENCE ROOM

Date: 3rd Wednesday of Each Month!
Time: 7:30PM – 10:00PM

The United Way Building is located in Tacoma, at 1501 Pacific Avenue. This is the same building that the VCVS office is located in. It is next to Union Station on the north side. As you pass Union Station you will see the United Way Building. Parking is on the south side of the building. Please park your vehicle in an open space and enter the building’s front entrance and take the elevator to the third floor. The conference room is Suite 312. Please call Lew Cox for more information (253) 383-5254.


Court Watch

POMC'S Court Watch Program is designed to help families maneuver through the court system. Two of the most important aspects of Court Watch are the prevention of any re-victimization to family members, and the minimizing of the emotional pain of going through hearings and trials.

If you would like support from POMC during hearings and trials or want to offer assistance, call Pat Elmore at 503-312-5681 or Allen Tremain at 503-522- 0577.


Important Notice Concerning The Newsletter:

Each month a number of newsletter are returned due to delivery problems. In addition to the initial postage, return postage is charged by the Postal Service. To minimize this expense, please write to the return address of this newsletter or contact Gayle if your address changes or you no longer wish to receive this publication.