08 September, 2017

A Call for Inaction, Following Robert WitbolsFeugen's Indictment

According to MissouriCaseNet, Anastasia WitbolsFeugen's father, Robert WitbolsFeugen, is facing charges for statutory sodomy in Jackson County, Missouri. The incident these charges stem from allegedly took place in 2015. A lot of people in the Free Byron Case camp have believed for a long time that he has a history of child sexual abuse and are now relieved that "he finally got caught." My own opinion is different, and because it concerns a relevant, topical issue I'm dispensing with my usual policy of avoiding legal matters in blog posts. I want my supporters, the general public, and those "Keep Byron Case in Prison" people to know where I stand.

A friend recently called me the least angry person he knew, with the best reason to be angry. Of course this referred to my wrongful conviction for murder and how I move through life without the caustic bitterness that might eat a less levelheaded person alive. Kelly Moffett, the ex-girlfriend whose lie let prosecutors close a pesky three-and-a-half-year-old case, may deserve my hatred for the damage she's done, but I have (I might as well be blunt) nobler ideals. Kelly is mentally ill. The extent of her illness isn't for me to diagnose or discuss here, but it's an irrefutable fact, based on documentation and anecdotal evidence, that she's a sick woman. My belief is that Kelly should have intensive psychiatric treatment on an inpatient basis, as she's a danger to those around her and, as her behavior over the past decades has shown, to herself.

But what's Kelly Moffett got to do with Robert WitbolsFeugen's criminal charges? you ask.

Robert is unquestionably one of the reasons that I'm typing this post in a prison cell. It was Robert who harassed the Jackson County Sheriff's Department to close the case, then, when no immediate results materialized, started pointing the finger at me and my friends, whose goth mien — black clothes and hair, pale skin, makeup, and piercings — made us seem like potential subjects of interest in a case whose principals hung out in cemeteries, coffeehouses, and (maybe most pernicious) video rental stores. It was Robert who invented theories of cultish goings-on, to pique investigators' interest. It was Robert who hounded county and state officials well beyond a job offer from the Jackson County Legislature and the passage of Interim Senate Resolution Number CL3777, which begins, "WHEREAS it is with heavy hearts that the members of the Missouri Senate pause to recognize the life and lifetime achievements of a remarkable young woman, Anastasia Elizabeth WitbolsFeugen of Independence, Missouri." It was Robert who forced authorities into an apparent ethical bind over the case and engineered the political pressure to close the fucking thing ASAP.

I have every reason to want both Kelly Moffett and Robert WitbolsFeugen to suffer the kind of torture that's been inflicted on me because of their actions…but I don't.

I especially don't share the notion that Robert's criminal charges are anything more than a curiosity at this point. There was a lot of scuttlebutt about allegations of child sexual abuse — of neighbor kids, of Robert's own daughters — sparked by statements made during the Sheriff's Department investigation. Any truth in these allegations would slightly bolster the already-established belief that Anastasia was suicidal, the whole week before her death, in that breaking up with Justin Bruton forced her to move back in with the man who may have molested her for years — but this is speculative at best. Besides, the man hasn't even had his pretrial hearing yet, at which the admissible evidence will be discussed in court. With what I'm big enough to admit is my own smug piety, I want everyone who reads this to know that I believe Robert deserves the benefit of the doubt. He crusaded against it for me, but our criminal justice system is based on certain principles, one of which is the presumption of innocence. A person who stands accused of a crime must be considered innocent of that crime unless sufficient evidence is presented by the prosecution to eliminate all reasonable doubt. I believe in this right even more fervently because it was denied me and led to my being imprisoned for the rest of my life simply because I befriended two kids my own age whose problems were beyond their abilities to grow beyond.

Robert WitbolsFeugen is a profoundly damaged human being who's done despicable things. He's also, presumably, innocent. Please, everyone, let the justice system grind its way to a conclusion in this matter without interference. Overemotional activism has led to enough injustice already.

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Lacking computer access of any kind, Byron cannot respond to your comments but is relayed them and appreciates your kind remarks.