Friday, April 30, 2010
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
I also want to send out a bit of information for any of you that might be in KC about an upcoming concert fundraiser. MerleJam will be Friday, May 7th at 7 pm and 8th at 5 pm at Knuckleheads Saloon in Kansas City. All proceeds from the concert will be donated to St. Luke's to provide assistance to pre and post-op heart transplant patients. We had the pleasure of meeting Merle and hearing him speak about his heart transplant and he is a wonderful guy. Drop by if you get a chance. You can read his story here http://www.mwtn.org/recipients/stories/merle-zuel
Thursday, April 22, 2010
An invocation was said by Father Kenneth Reichert, OSB of Conception Abbey. Then Rick Bradley, Chief Juvenile Officer of the 4th Judicial Circuit Court led everyone in the Pledge of Allegiance. Mayor Pro-Tem Shawn Wake then read a Proclamation from the Mayor's office declaring this Crime Victims' Rights Week. This was followed by a speech from Associate Circuit Judge of Worth County Joel Miller.
A tree was then symbolically planted by Nodaway County Prosecuting Attorney David Baird, MTC Warden Joe Ledbetter, Tom Seipel, and Judge Joel Miller.
I was then asked to briefly say a few words. Here is what I said ~In 2007, there were 12,998 alcohol-related crash fatalities. This amounted to 32 percent of all crash fatalities that year. Our daughter, Abrielle Lauryn Neff, is one of those numbers. On March 29, 2007, a driver with alcohol still plaguing his system caused a collision that took her life. We did not choose to be the victims of a crime, as no one does, but after being thrust into the situation, we had only the hope of justice to hold on to.
Justice for us has had to be measured by several factors other than only the amount of time the offender was ordered to serve, as no matter the amount, it will never be enough for us to consider acceptable for taking the life of our little girl. We have instead reflected upon our treatment during the process as a way to validate our justice. We were treated with the utmost respect from every official involved. From the Highway Patrol to the Sheriff’s office to the Prosecuting Attorney, every official kept us informed and involved which is exactly what we wanted and were given an outcome that was considered fair according to the law. We have also been thankful for all the rights that have been established for crime victims. Without them, we would not have been able to present an impact statement at sentencing or a letter at the parole hearing.
Edith Wharton said, “There are only two ways of spreading light – to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it.” We have chosen to be the candle and have established the Abrielle Neff Foundation in memory of our daughter.
I went on to talk about the Foundation.
My words were followed by a Benediction by Father Reichert and a closing song by Spectrum.
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Tuesday, April 20, 2010
Monday, April 19, 2010
Friday, April 16, 2010
The tag reads, "Simple Pleasures are Priceless Treasures." My journaling is a list of things I feel lucky for with Abby. It say, "lucky to be ....
- blessed with a second daughter
- able to say "I'm Abrielle's Mom"
- given a Mommy's girl
- blessed with almost 4 years with Abby
- the family chosen for an angel
Thursday, April 15, 2010
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
The House bill stalled in the Rules Committee for some wording issues and the Senate bill is awaiting a final vote.
We have contacted both our State Representative and our State Senator to urge them to support this bill. Representative Mike Thomson has expressed to us that he had spoken with the sponsor of the bill and will be supporting the proposed legislation.
We ask that you too request your local Representative and Senator support this bill, so that other families will not have some of these injustices to face.
**eta** I am looking for the acutal bill number and will post it soon. Here is a link to Gov Nixon's site telling a bit more about it.
**eta** The bill is HB 1695 sponsored by Bryan P Stevenson.
Friday, April 9, 2010
Thursday, April 8, 2010
Wednesday, April 7, 2010
with Disney cartoons on.
We also found pennies and several times found ourselves knowing she was there.
Monday, April 5, 2010
The new toolbar is free to download and allows you to raise money for our cause every time you search or shop online! Once added to IE or Firefox, each time you shop at more than 1,300 stores (from Amazon to Zazzle!) a percentage of your purchase will automatically be donated to the Foundation - at no cost to you (and you may even save money as the toolbar provides coupons and deals as well!). The toolbar also has a search box and each time you search the Internet, about a penny is donated to the Foundation.
Please hurry and do this now so that we can earn the $1 bonus per toolbar!
And, please pass this along to all of your friends. The two minutes it takes to add this toolbar to your browser can make a difference for our cause!
Get the toolbar NOW!
Thursday, April 1, 2010
09DK-CV00001 - RYAN SUNDERMANN V ST OF MO, MO DEPT OF CORRECTIONS
This information is provided as a service and is not considered an official court record.
Date Filed: 01/05/2009
Location: DeKalb Case Type: CC Declaratory Judgment
Disposition: Other Final Disposition Date of Disposition: 01/20/2010
Judge/Commissioner At Disposition: MCELWAIN, WARREN L
01/20/2010 Docket Entry: Other Final Disposition
Text: Being fully advised in the premises, the Court finds that based upon Goings v Missouri Department of Corrections 6S.W. 3RD 906 that the 156 days spent by Petitioner in the Nodaway County jail was "related" to the Involuntary Manslaughter charge that Petitioner was sentenced to 6 years in the Missouri Department of Corrections on June 25, 2008. The court notes that the revocation of the prior Misdemeanor sentences of 180 days on July 17, 2007 could have been based solely on Petitioner's operating a motor vehicle without a valid license or the consumption of alcohol. However in construing the statute (RSMo 558.031) we are guided by the principle that criminal statutes must be construed strictly against the State and liberally in favor of the defendant. Goings, supera citing State v Jones 899 SW 2d 126. The court heard testimony of current Nodaway County Sheriff Davis White that it was his understanding that Petitioner was held on both Involuntary Manslaughter and the prior Misdemeanors. Additionally the Court notes that in Petitioner's Exhibit #3, the Nodaway County Sheriff's office listed the offense from 7-30-07 to 01-02-2008 as time served for "involuntary manslaughter." Therefore the court finds and believes that Petitioner's 156 days were related to the Involuntary Manslaughter charge and pursuant to Section 558.031 he is entitled to credit thereon. Court costs are taxed against Petitioner. It is so Ordered. Petitioners Attorney to draw proposed Order. (WLM)
Docket Entry: Judgment Entered
Basically it means he will be released 156 days early. His new release date is now January 7, 2012. A full four years out of the 6 year sentence will not be spent behind bars.
I am at a loss today. I feel like the justice system just said that her life is not worth the full sentence. It feels like a gut-shot and I don't know that there is any way to fight it.
How much more injustice do we have to experience? When will the laws work for the victims instead of in the offender's favor?
I am just in tears.
First, a little history. National Donate Life Month was established in 2003 to celebrate the generosity of those who have saved lives through donation. This month is also to help encourage others to follow in their footsteps and donate too. Whether it is organ, tissue, or cornea donated, every donation saves or improves lives.
So please join me this month in spreading the word.