This is basic common sense: if the smear campaign was actually true…
My ex never would have asked that I have Residential Custody (80/20) in his first two divorce petitions.
I would not be a licensed educator in the state of Illinois – I would have lost my license. Of course I did not.
There would have been DCFS findings against me. Of course there were none. However, there WERE DCFS findings against my ex for instigating false and harassing investigations.This was discussed at length in Dr. Finn’s 604 Custody Evaluation.
I would have been arrested. Of course I was not.
My ex wouldn’t have had to file eight custody petitions to finally manufacture a fraudulent custody switch.
There would have been criminal proceedings against me. Of course there were none.
Custody Crisis Rabbit Holes How Women Are Being Diverted, Distracted & Deceived Women’s Coalition, Mar 6 “Custody Crisis Rabbit Holes” are quagmires women get entangled in when searching for the reason custody was taken away from them, given to their abusive or self-serving ex, and the relationship with their children damaged or destroyed. These misguided pathways are full of misrepresentations that divert mothers from understanding the true nature and cause of the crisis. They lead to wasting time fighting for ineffective solutions and, worse, misleading other women and the public on the topic. It is only when women are able to recognize this kind of misinformation that we will be able to unite under a common set of facts and fight a unified battle for an effective solution. This column is just an overview of the main rabbit holes women can get caught up in. Future columns will go into depth on each one, some more convoluted than others.
COMMON RABBIT HOLES Abuse Rabbit Hole, Parental Alienation Rabbit Hole, Profiteering Rabbit Hole, Rights & Laws Rabbit Hole
“Abuse” rabbit holers believe the problem is judges mistakenly giving kids to abusers, rather than deliberately to fathers, some of whom are abusive. Most mothers in this morass believe judges have been misled by their very own court-appointed professionals or that they suffer from unconscious biases. This misidentification leads mothers to believe new laws and more training will bring an end to the crisis. However, since judges and their lackeys actually know the father is abusive, training won’t help; and there are ways to get around child safety and domestic violence laws by falsely accusing mothers of various things.
The “Parental Alienation” rabbit hole has two camps: “alienation is not valid” and “alienation is valid”.The “not valid” camp is focused on stopping alienation from being recognized by authorities and preventing the use of the term in Family Court. This won’t make much, if any, difference since there are plenty of synonyms and similar concepts which judges can use. The “valid” camp contends alienation is a real and terrible problem for both fathers and mothers. Hence, it has been coopted by the gender neutral arm of fathers’ rights groups. This separation into two camps serves to divide mothers and obfuscate the gendered nature of the use of alienation by Family Court judges. The fact is the only epidemic is judges falsely accusing mothers of alienation in order to switch custody to fathers, and allowing fathers to alienate children after they give them custody. This fact should unify women on the alienation topic.
“Profiteering” dwellers believe that profiting by court-affiliated Family Court professionals is causing the crisis, and that is often described as a “cottage industry”. While profiting surely is rampant, it is just the reward for professionals who go along with the agenda to entitle and empower fathers. It’s just fuel on an existing fire. Reducing profiteering may make it slightly more difficult for judges to switch custody, but the crisis existed before the divorce industry took off, and it exists in countries where there is no industry to speak of.
“Rights & Laws” rabbit holers believe the problem is a lack of child safety and/or domestic violence laws, or of women’s, parent’s, or children’s rights laws. As stated above in the “Abuse” rabbit hole, laws and rights are not the problem. It is judges falsely accusing mothers of being liars, alienators, mentally ill, whatever…There are plenty of built-in ways for judges to get around laws and rights legally, and there is no way to hold judges accountable for violating the letter of the law. Since family courts are rigged, new laws have not and will not help.
MISINFORMATION & DISINFORMATION Women should not feel bad about getting caught up in a rabbit hole or two. Most go down at least one during their Family Court nightmare, because misinformation and disinformation about the custody crisis abounds. Some rabbit hole misinformation is promoted by well-intentioned activists, who themselves misconstrue the crisis. However, some is disinformation promoted by organizations that profit from portraying the crisis wrongly; or by fathers’ rights activists [FRA’s] who operate covertly as gender-neutral activists in order to deceive and divide women. The fact that so many women over the last half century have gotten diverted, distracted and deceived by these rabbit holes helps explain why there has been zero progress in ending the crisis. In fact, it seems to be getting worse. The most important thing for women to recognize when it comes to these rabbit holes is that they divert and distract from an understanding that the root cause of the Custody Crisis is systemic discrimination against women , and that is what needs to be eradicated. And in order to eliminate this universal injustice, a new system for deciding custody, which is not rigged against women, must be implemented. The Women’s Coalition is uniting women so we have the power to fight for this new system. Join us!
No part of the following article may be reproduced or copied without the express permission of the author, Lisa Nadig. Ms. Nadig is a graduate of Stockton High School and DePaul University. The above photo is from the Stockton Public Schools Radiothon, Fall 2021. Pictured is Superintendent James Bunting (Center) holding the microphone, without his mask.All photos have been previously published on the world wide web, the school’s social media sites, throughout the news media, and republished according to fair use laws.
Back To School With Stockton’s Very Own “Science Guy”, 45 year Stockton Science Teacher, Mr. Gary Underwood, by Lisa Nadig
September 23, 2021, Stockton School Board Meeting, Stockton, IL: It’s time we all took a refresher course, a review of lessons learned in Science Class. Here to help us is 45 year Stockton High School Science Teacher, Mr. Gary Underwood.
Mr. Underwood very graciously accepted my invitation to address the Stockton School Board meeting. He began by clearing up the definition of the word Science: “Science is the search for truth. But now, this isn’t Science, it’s Political Science. ” Mr. Underwood then gave a brief review on Viruses. He asked us: “Have any of you ever seen a virus?” When nobody responded that they had, he said: “You need an electron microscope to see a virus.” Before Mr. Underwood concluded his refresher course on Science and Viruses, he looked around the gymnasium and said: “There isn’t a single mask in this entire place that could stop a virus.”
I would like to thank Mr. Underwood for our sorely needed science refresher course. It seems to me that “Science” is a word that’s become a political weapon, that it means whatever drives a certain financial or political agenda.
I’m also grateful to hear that Mr. Underwood is not afraid of viruses to the point he would sit home in fear and isolation, or endorse reliance on a thin piece of cloth to feel “Safe”. Nor is Mr. Underwood hypocritical or willing to misuse his position of power and influence to force children to do something he himself is not really willing to do.
But our school board is regularly observed parading around our community without their masks on – defying the governor’s mandate to wear masks in these public places. They freely waltz into school events, stores, restaurants and bars all over town on a daily basis, without the masks they gladly force our babies to wear all day, AND in open defiance of the governor’s mandate for masks in all public places.
But let’s go back to that word “Safe”. Wow! Now that’s another word misused to create fear. How many times do you hear “Stay safe!” If I hear someone tell me “Stay safe” when I go to a public place, I know they too are living the lie, and pretending that living in fear – while traumatizing our children – is somehow a really grand, and noble thing.
But if the Stockton School Board really believed their own lies – that the mask is keeping everyone safe – including them – they’d never take it off in public, would they. And if they really believed in the governor’s mandate to wear masks in all public places, they wouldn’t openly defy it out in front of us every day.
Franklin Delano Roosevelt once said: “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” That’s as true today as it was when our country faced the Great Depression, and World War II.
But the thing I fear isn’t a virus that the vast majority of people fully recover from. And the Stockton School Board has proven they don’t really fear it either, by their own actions out in the community every day – they just PRETEND to be afraid.
No, whatI fear most are School Board members who would dare presume to know more about Science than our Science Teacher.
I fear School Board members who are willing to throw our children’s education away just for the Covid Relief payoff – throwing the baby out with the bathwater – because they’ve lost approximately 10-15 children to homeschooling already – at approximately $16K per child! So, on the low end of 10 children at $16k per child, for 12 years, is $1.92 Million, nearly twice the $1.12 Million in Covid Relief funding received for this school year.
Our school enrollment has already been rapidly dwindling for years, to the point that not too long ago, there was a push to consolidate with the Warren schools. High School enrollment is already down approximately 50% over the last few decades. Can we really afford to continue to lose students?This is certainly very poor long-term planning.
I fear School Board members who are so threatened by anyone who disagrees that they attempt to deprive them of their First Amendment rights through intimidation, and smear campaigns.Who illegally attempt to silence dissent by harassing, bullying and openly mocking the public for peacefully exercising their right to speak at Open Meetings – in violation of the Open Meetings Act.
I fear School Board members who force kids to do what they themselves won’t do, just so they can look “politically correct”, while they do “virtue signaling performance art” for each other, but at the same time, demonstrating publicly that these were really just sham performances.
I fear school board members who’ve forgotten their duty to serve the public with respect, grace, dignity and diligence. I fear school board members who seem blissfully unaware of the momentous task ahead of them in repairing the public’s trust and goodwill.
I fear Big Pharma CEO’s beholden to shareholders profits, driving medical treatment decisions for patients instead of Doctors. I fear the exploitation of our precious children, by turning them into mere commodities for a political and financial agenda. I fear the physical and emotional abuse of our children – forced to wear an absolutely disgustingly filthy cloth on their faces all day. I fear turning our precious children into sacrificial cash cows.
I fear notoriously corrupt Illinois politics – ranked among the worst in the country – compromising our children’s education and futures. I fear the political posturing, Big Pharma corruption, propaganda campaigns & corruption at the federal, state and local levels, cherry-picking evidence, lying, bullying, tyrannical overreach, law breaking, violations of our Constitutional rights, vicious, baseless smear campaigns, and witch hunts by those with ulterior financial and political motives.
California’s “Right To Lie” Case, PreslieHardwick v. Orange County, Marcia Vreeken, Elaine Wilkins, The Estate of Helen Dwojack
But we didn’t know you couldn’t lie to the court. DUH!!!Liar, liar pants on fire!!! That line didn’t work on your Mother and it won’t work in Court!
Judge Stephen Trott, 9th Circuit’s Court of Appeals: “How in the world could a person in the shoes of your clients possibly believe that it was appropriate to use perjury and false evidence” to remove a child from a parent, asked Judge Stephen Trott, a longtime member of the court appointed by Ronald Reagan in 1987. “How could they possibly not be in notice that you can’t do that?”
The panel did in fact reject the argument, and Trott wrote the opinion, which was released this week. Buried on page 13 is a line that artfully relays his incredulity at the argument: “No official with an IQ greater than room temperature in Alaska could claim that he or she did not know that the conduct at the center of this case violated both state and federal law.”
BAM! Trott also provided a more precise dismissal of the constitutional appeal:
“… Government perjury and the knowing use of false evidence are absolutely and obviously irreconcilable with the Fourteenth Amendment’s guarantee of Due Process in our courts. Furthermore, the social workers’ alleged transgressions were not made under pressing circumstances requiring prompt action, or those providing ambiguous or conflicting guidance. There are no circumstances in a dependency proceeding that would permit government officials to bear false witness against a parent.” https://imprintnews.org/subscriber-content/9th-circuits-epic-dis-caseworkers-right-lie-case/23746
WATCH JUDGE TROTT HERE – BAM!!!!!! “Since the 1940’s the Supreme Court has held that there is a fundamental liberty interest that parents have in the care, custody and control of their children. That’s been on the books forever. I mean, I have a whole bunch of Supreme Court cases I can read from…They have that fundamental Constitutional right, and it cannot be impaired without due process of law.” The CPS “Right-to-Lie” Case, in which an attorney for CPS is asking a three-panel commission to ascertain if CPS has a constitutional right to take children from a home BASED ON PERJURY AND FABRICATED EVIDENCE-THE RIGHT TO LIE. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d_8-8IZLP4w
On July 28, from 6:00-8:00 ET, we will be presenting our 7th free monthly ‘Judi’s Room’ in the spirit of Judi Chamberlin who dedicated her life to organizing for human rights. This is a virtual event. Pre-registration is required HERE.
Judi’s Room is a partnership of MindFreedom International and I Love You Lead On.
Why are we discussing the following topic?
Conservatorship/Guardianship: Protecting Vulnerable Individuals or Exploitation?
Brittany Spears leaked public testimony HERE on how she continues to be mistreated has brought much needed attention to the abuses rampant in the guardian and conservator system. She has been stripped of her rights by a complex conservatorship which treats her as a money-making object and denies her personhood. People with disabilities, as well as the elderly are too easily taken advantage of under the false principle that it is “for their own good.” Anyone can be vulnerable. The presenters will describe the control that guardians have and will engage in dialogue with attendees on what can be done to change a system that exploits those who are vulnerable.
As with all previous Judi’s Room meetings, a panel of experts will share their perspectives, followed by a facilitated discussion.
Jim Gottstein is the author of The Zyprexa Papers and founder of PsychRights whose mission is to mount a strategic litigation campaign against forced psychiatric drugging and electroshock. Susan Fitzmaurice is a lifelong disability advocate and disabled with multiple disabilities. She has parented two young disabled people and made very different choices about guardianship resulting with very different consequences. She has a long history using the internet to provide disability support. Her first sexuality and disability website is over 25 years old. She created the first web-based resources for people with disabilities after the Katrina hurricane. She currently is devoted to the ILove You, Lead On Community – a space where disability and all its intersections are celebrated. Dohn Hoyle is the Public Policy Director of The Arc of Michigan and long-time advocate for the rights of people with disabilities. Dohn helped to rewrite the Michigan Mental Health Code to include person-centered planning and to eliminate the term mental retardation; was instrumental in the closure of specialized nursing homes for children and people with developmental disabilities, and the Regional Centers for People with Developmental Disabilities in his state. Dohn convenes the Howell Group, an organization of people across Michigan who intend to see that people with disabilities have the opportunity to experience what we know is right and they desire, and Advocates Concerned with Integrated Care, a group of disability organizations representing the concerns of persons who are eligible for Medicaid and Medicare and receive supports. Miranda Spencer is a staff editor at the webzine Mad in America. A longtime journalist and media critic, specializing in health, science, and social justice, her work is informed by her lived experience in the mental health system.
Pre-registration is required. To register click HERE
“A Message from OMB’s President (Rebecca Davis Merritt) and Vice President (Jennifer) about Domestic Violence by Proxy: You have probably seen OMB’s informational poster about why we advocate not using the term or “theory” of Parental Alienation. We post it once a month encouraging our readers to understand that the controlling behaviors of Cluster B parents in trying to place a wedge between the children and healthy parent is Domestic Violence by Proxy. The emotional abuse of a Cluster B is domestic Violence (DV). When a Cluster B personality disordered individual enters the family court system they wage war upon the healthy parent.
They may have been absent parents never attending school, medical or dental appointments but suddenly they attend everything, preening as the doting father or mother and may push for custody. Custody is seen as a prize. The goal is to hurt the healthy primary parent and save money via child support calculations.
As part of that push they groom children to see their healthy parent as untrustworthy and self-centered (projection), with divorce or separation their fault while portraying the Cluster B parent as wounded and needing the children to shower him or her with love and affection. Children often respond to this gaslighting by siding with the abusive parent. The Cluster B parent often blames the healthy parent for his or her own actions, claiming parental alienation (PA). If the children distrust Cluster B parent based upon a history of abusive behaviors, this estrangement is labeled as PA. The healthy parent, unfortunately, is at serious risk of losing custody in family court.
Men who physically batter their former partner are much more likely to gain custody than the healthy parent. Courts have been taught that women claiming DV in family court are usually lying and using this false claim to secure custody. Even when DV claims are accepted, courts falsely believe DV only affects direct victim and that abusers can be good parents to their children. Once Cluster Bs have the children away from the healthy parent, they use manipulation and other forms of abuse to convince the children that their other parent never loved them and are untrustworthy. Alina Patterson (2003) first defined Domestic Violence by Proxy or DV Proxy. DV Proxy is a pattern of behavior where a parent with a history of using domestic violence, or intimidation uses the child (as a substitute) when s/he does not have access to the former partner. Continuing the cycle of domestic violence, the cycle of Domestic Violence by Proxy starts when the victim leaves the abuser and the abuser learns the easiest way to continue to harm and control the former partner is through controlling access to the children.
Once the abuser has control of the children they are able to continue stalking, harassing and abusing the former partner even when the abuser has no direct access. DV can manifest in ways such as threats to the children if they display a close relationship with the former partner, destroying the children’s favorite possessions given by the former partner and emotional abuse. Children are often coached to make false allegations about the parent.DV by proxy is very deliberate and planned. The abusers know what they are doing and chose their controlling, coercive, and illegal behaviors. The behaviors are usually surrounded by threats and fears and often include “battery, destruction of property, locking children in rooms to prevent them from calling parents, falsifying documents, along with other similar overt behaviors.”
As the leadership council suggests, “Calling this behavior “parental alienation” is not strong enough to convey the criminal pattern of terroristic behaviors employed by batterers.” Unlike Gardner’s discredited PAS theory, the behaviors associated with DV by proxy are visible. Gardner stated the behaviors by the “alienating parent” were unconscious or unseen. This is one of the scarier components in Gardner’s theory because you cannot defend yourself against unseen things. Many healthy parents have found themselves trying to defend themselves against these unseen behaviors.
Family court professionals often fail to understand the presence and implications of both domestic violence and Cluster B psychopathology. Thus family court usually encourages unfettered access of the children to abusers. Family court judges and lawyers often work to punish healthy parents reporting bona fide abuse. Yet, they often seem to believe the victim stories told by abusers. Court officials often seem slow to recognize how family court itself can be abusive, particularly protracted, repeated, unnecessary court hearings used by the abuser to drain the financial and emotional resources of the healthy parent. Children may be placed with the abuser while the healthy parent is discredited through accusations of mental illness or PA. Other professionals involved including GALs, evaluators, therapists, etc. often take on responsibilities that are beyond their skill level. Antisocial and or Narcissistic personality disordered parents with good impression management skills are adept at “conning people, or gaining sympathy, and can win the trust and support of a family court professional while turning that same person against their ex-partner.”
###One Mom’s Battle: Our mission at One Mom’s Battle is to increase awareness of Cluster B personality disorders (Narcissistic Personality Disorder, Antisocial Personality Disorder and Borderline Personality Disorder) and their impact upon shared parenting and the Family Court System which includes Judges, CPS workers, Guardian ad Litems (GAL), Parenting Coordinators (PC), Custody Evaluators, therapists and attorneys. Education on Cluster B disorders will allow these professionals to truly act in the best interest of the children.
History of One Mom’s Battle: In 2009, One Mom’s Battle began with one mother, (Tina Swithin), navigating the choppy waters of a high-conflict divorce in the Family Court System. Since then, it has turned into a grassroots movement reaching the far corners of the Earth. Tina’s battle spanned from 2009 – 2014 during which time she acted as her own attorney. Ultimately, Tina was successful in protecting her daughters and her family has enjoyed complete peace since October 2014 when a Family Court commissioner called her ex-husband a “sociopath” and revoked his parenting time in a final custody order.Tina Swithin: Tina Swithin’s books are available online at Amazon (print, Kindle or audio format). Each year, Tina offers life-changing weekends of camaraderie and healing at the Lemonade Power Retreat. Tina also offers one-on-one coaching services and a private, secure forum called, The Lemonade Club, for those enduring high-conflict custody battles.”https://www.onemomsbattle.com/blog/domestic-violence-by-proxy
Here is a copy of Ms. Hadzi-Tanovic’s Federal Complaint against ex-husband Slabodan Pavlovich, Associate Judge Robert W. Johnson, and former powerful attorney David Pasulka, who acted as the Guardian ad Litem on the Case. Pasulka also formerly headed a secret list of lawyers chosen for the highly lucrative appointments as GAL’s & Child Reps in Cook County Chicago. Recently, the IL ARDC finally acted to disbar Pasulka, after many years of ignored complaints. True to the pattern of bad judges and lawyers protecting one another through the IL ARDC, Judicial Inquiry Board, and the head judge offices, they only acted after significant publicity. Sadly, bad judges and lawyers continue causing serious harm to children and families on a routine basis, only facing consequences once the negative publicity finally becomes too great to ignore. In this case, the IL ARDC finally acted against Pasulka only after attorney Lawrence Thompson’s open letter calling for the resignations of Cook County’s head judges Tim Evans and Grace Dickler, for allowing Paulka to remain in power, was aired on CBS Channel 2 News. https://songsunsilenced.wordpress.com/2021/03/23/attorney-claims-top-chicago-judges-enabled-embattled-lawyer-david-pasulka-to-have-unchecked-power-in-selecting-family-lawyers/
“Aneta Hadzi-Tanovic, leader of the local Illinois Women’s Coalition, has filed an $8 million federal lawsuit against Family Court judge Robert Wade Johnson, the GAL, and her ex for conspiring to deprive her under the color of law of her right to due process and equal protection, as well as for the intentional torts “abuse of process” and “intentional infliction of emotional distress”.
Aneta’s custody nightmare mirrors women’s cases all over the country and world in which Family Court judges disregard substantial negative evidence about the father, and fabricate negative evidence about the mother, in order to justify switching custody to the father.” Mom Sues Judge, GAL and Ex For $8M In U.S. Federal Court
LAWSUIT COUNTS 1. Conspiracy to deprive of due process [42 U.S.C. §1983] 2. Conspiracy to deprive of equal protection under the law [42 U.S.C. §1983] 3. Abuse of process [intentional tort] 4. Intentional infliction of emotional distress [intentional tort]
CHICAGO (CBS) — A Chicago area attorney on Tuesday was calling for the resignation of Cook County’s chief judge and the presiding judge of the Domestic Relations division, for allowing what he calls unchecked power in how attorneys are selected by the courts in messy divorce cases.
As CBS 2’s Charlie De Mar reported, the committee that selects those attorneys has been chaired by David Pasulka, who is now facing allegations of sexual assault.
Pasulka has hand-picked and curated a list of family attorneys. If you’re on the list, you’re eligible to be tapped by a judge to represent children caught in the middle of divorce cases – and it pays well to get on the list.
“The list can harm children,” said attorney Lawrence Thompson.
Pasulka was selected more than 20 years ago by a judge to hold this powerful role of gatekeeper.
In a 2016 picture posted to Facebook, Pasulka posed with the current presiding Cook County Judge for the Domestic Relations Division, the Honorable Grace Dickler.
“We will never know the number of children and parents and spouses who have been impacted by this,” Thompson said.
Thompson wrote a letter to Judge Dickler and Cook County Chief Judge Tim Evans, raising concerns about the list, who is on it, and the power Pasulka has held for decades.
“There’s a crystal clear conflict of interest,” Thompson said. “It created an incentive for those attorneys to favor Pasulka in the divorce litigation.”
In the letter, Thompson says Pasulka had the ability to blackball opposing attorneys from the list – or remove a lawyer already on it – so it benefitted Pasulka’s competition to toe the line, potentially putting profits over the interests of the child
“Pasulka, if the allegations are accurate, was doing some horrible things for a long time,” Thompson said.
“I tried doing something good for the system a long time ago,” Thompson said. “I failed.”
Thompson took Pasulka to court unsuccessfully some 15 years ago raising similar concerns about Pasulka and the conflict of the screening committee.
“I want the system to change,” Thompson said.
In the letter sent on Tuesday, Thompson wrote: “The administration selected a bully-pervert, and put him in charge of regulating which of his associates would be the high-income in-crowd in the Cook County domestic relations courts.”
Thompson is calling for chief Judge Evans and Judge Dickler’s resignations, accusing them of enabling Pasulka through the unchecked power given to him
“I would hope that they would have an investment in cleaning up the system now,” Thompson said.
Thompson does acknowledge and does not shy away from the fact that his is personal for him. When Thompson went through a divorce, Pasulka represented his ex-wife in a divorce case.
Pasulka has been suspended from serving as guardian ad litem in Cook County; Judge Dickler, who presides over domestic relations cases, prevented him from doing so when she found out about the complaint, according to a spokesperson for Office of the Chief Judge of Cook County.
Facing Sexual Assault Charges, Powerful Attorney And Former Guardian Ad Litem David Pasulka Is Stripped Of Law License
“Pasulka chaired a secretive committee that selects child representatives and guardians ad litem — attorneys appointed to represent the best interests of children in the midst of custody disputes — for more than 20 years. An attorney who works in the division wrote a letter to Cook County Chief Judge Tim Evans and Judge Grace Dickler, who oversees the domestic division, calling for the two judges to resign for allowing Pasulka to remain in power.”
Author: CBS 2 Chicago Staff January 6, 2021 at 9:35 pm
CHICAGO (CBS) — Once-powerful Chicago attorney David Pasulka was facing more trouble Wednesday, as a state board stripped him of his law license.
Pasulka is already facing criminal charges related to sexual assault and abuse allegations, including accusations that he offered to recommend a parent get full custody of her children in exchange for sex with him.
He is also accused of sexually assaulting several employees.
Pasulka was charged in August with one count of criminal sexual assault, one count of aggravated criminal sexual abuse and one count of criminal sexual abuse — charges that could carry a sentence of up to 15 years in prison.