~ ~ Please read after you watch Kelsey's video ~ ~
Kelsey Briggs lost her life before the age of three due to Child Abuse.
It is a Tragic story but one that must be shared.Hopefully Kelsey's story will touch your heart and you will be willing to step up to the plate and help children who can't help themselves.
Please read her story below.
Kelsey Briggs was born in Oklahoma on December 28,2002 after her parents Lance Briggs and Raye Dawn Smith were divorced.
At the end of 2004 Raye Dawn Smith started dating a man named Michael Lee Porter.
The first reported incident of suspected child abuse regarding Kelsey was made on Jan.17,2005.
Kelsey Briggs grandmother Kathie Briggs was granted custody Jan.24,2005.
Raye Dawn Smith married Michael Lee Porter on April 18,2005.
On May 3,2005 Kelsey was taken out of her grandmothers care by OKDHS.
Kelsey was put in protective custody because of leg injuries.
At that time Raye Dawn was having unsupervised visitation with Kelsey, sometimes in the presence of Mike Porter which went against a court order.
Raye and Mike had Kelsey more hours than did Kathie.
May 4,2005 Kelsey was moved to her maternal Grandmother Gayla Smith.
Kelsey suffered months of documented abuse, which included FOUR CONFIRMED cases of abuse.Confirmed abuse were the abrasions and bruises on her bottom in January 2005, and the two spiral breaks to her legs in April 2005.
June 15,2005 Judge Craig Key sent Kelsey back to her mom and stepfather.The judge stated,
"Kelsey's abuser was unknown."
Kelsey was visited by a social worker every week.
Her biological father Lance Briggs was a soldier in Iraq he was undergoing care at a treatment facility for a back injury and was in the process of checking out from his duty in
Lance was schedueled to be home within a week or so.
On October 11,2005 Kelsey was murdered.
Raye Dawn and Michael Porter were the only ones around Kelsey in the hour leading up to her death.
Raye went to pick Whitney up from school.Whitney is Mike Porter's Bio daughter from a previous relationship.
The cause of death was blunt force trauma to the abdomen,it was ruled a Homicide.
Kelsey Briggs died just days before her father was to return.
Two weeks later Porter was arrested on first degee murder.
Her mother was later charged with two felonies of Child Neglect and Enabling Child Abuse.
In April of 2006 Kelsey's body was exhumed for a second autopsy where sexual abuse was documented.
The Stepfather's charges were amended to add the sexual abuse.
Porter and Smith divorced after Kelsey's death.
On February 2,2007 a plea negotiation was entered and approved by the paternal family.
The stepfather plead guilty to a reduced charge of Enabling Child Abuse and received 30 years in prison.
He has no possibility of parole for 25.5years.
Kelsey's mother Raye Dawn Smith went on trial July 9,2007.
She was found guilty of enabling child abuse, she will serve 27 years in prison, without the possibility of parole for 23 years.
Alot of people failed Kelsey.
Remember her story the next time you think a child is being abused.Please report it,if you don't, that child may suffer the same fate as Kelsey.Please don't let that happen.
A new law has been named for Kelsey in Oklahoma to prevent this type of failure in the Oklahoma State System.
Song:"Somewhere over the Rainbow"
- Eva Cassidy
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