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Fri Apr 6, 2012, 02:30 PM

 

Rare Disease Mimics Child Abuse and Tears Family Apart (Husband kills wife and himself)

William "Dave" O'Shell, distraught over charges of child abuse that were being leveled against him, snapped on June 30, 2008, killing his wife, Tiffany O'Shell, in their Henderson, Colo., home before taking his own life.

Just a few weeks earlier, their green-eyed, 3-month-old daughter, Alyssa, had been placed in a foster home because x-rays revealed 11 broken bones and doctors assumed that she had been beaten.

But they were wrong.

On the same day as the murder-suicide, a doctor at Colorado Children's Hospital suspected something else and was later proved right: Alyssa had a rare genetic disorder that caused her bones to fracture -- one that authorities had confused for abuse.

http://gma.yahoo.com/rare-disease-mimics-child-abuse-tears-family-apart-210441467--abc-news-health.html

I actually had a very similar experience years ago. A friend's child was taken away for close to a year because they suspected her of abuse. Turns out that the child had osteogenesis imperfecta. She had to submit medical records, family trees, affidavits over and over until they finally agreed to return the child.

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Arrow 20 replies Author Time Post
Reply Rare Disease Mimics Child Abuse and Tears Family Apart (Husband kills wife and himself) (Original post)
Snake Alchemist Apr 2012 OP
seabeyond Apr 2012 #1
CaliforniaPeggy Apr 2012 #2
malaise Apr 2012 #13
CaliforniaPeggy Apr 2012 #14
cali Apr 2012 #15
malaise Apr 2012 #16
ScreamingMeemie Apr 2012 #17
malaise Apr 2012 #19
deutsey Apr 2012 #3
proud2BlibKansan Apr 2012 #4
renate Apr 2012 #5
mimitabby Apr 2012 #6
ScreamingMeemie Apr 2012 #7
seabeyond Apr 2012 #8
Snake Alchemist Apr 2012 #11
slampoet Apr 2012 #12
Arkansas Granny Apr 2012 #9
Baitball Blogger Apr 2012 #10
Brickbat Apr 2012 #18
Th1onein Apr 2012 #20

Response to Snake Alchemist (Original post)

Fri Apr 6, 2012, 02:32 PM

1. oh, that is so fuckin horribly sad..... nt

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Response to Snake Alchemist (Original post)

Fri Apr 6, 2012, 02:32 PM

2. That is very sad...

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Response to CaliforniaPeggy (Reply #2)

Fri Apr 6, 2012, 03:23 PM

13. Can you imagine trying to cope with a sick child and being accused

Last edited Fri Apr 6, 2012, 06:38 PM - Edit history (1)

of abuse. I hope the relatives sue them and take back the child

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Response to malaise (Reply #13)

Fri Apr 6, 2012, 03:25 PM

14. I cannot even begin to imagine such a scenario. Horrifying...n/t

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Response to malaise (Reply #13)

Fri Apr 6, 2012, 03:25 PM

15. yes I can.

and I still didn't kill anyone or hurt anyone in any fucking way. He's still a murderer.

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Response to cali (Reply #15)

Fri Apr 6, 2012, 03:27 PM

16. I don't know - maybe it wasan agreed joint suicide

and you don't know either

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Response to malaise (Reply #13)

Fri Apr 6, 2012, 06:27 PM

17. Sadly, the child died 4 months after her parents.

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Response to ScreamingMeemie (Reply #17)

Fri Apr 6, 2012, 06:39 PM

19. How sad indeed

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Response to Snake Alchemist (Original post)

Fri Apr 6, 2012, 02:36 PM

3. Tragic



They looked like a nice family.

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Response to Snake Alchemist (Original post)

Fri Apr 6, 2012, 02:46 PM

4. There was a case where a mother went to prison

Turned out her kids had some genetic disorder that looked liked they'd been poisoned.

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Response to Snake Alchemist (Original post)

Fri Apr 6, 2012, 02:56 PM

5. what kind of pediatrician or ER doctor wouldn't check for OP before putting a family through this?

Even I know about osteogenesis imperfecta and how it looks like abuse, and I'm neither. (Props to the doctor who did recognize the possibility, of course.) The priority ought to be the child's safety, and I guess no system is 100% perfect, but this was so avoidable.

The whole thing is so tragic... but dude, why did you have to take your wife with you? I'm so tired of people who take other family members out just because things have gotten too much for them to handle.

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Response to renate (Reply #5)

Fri Apr 6, 2012, 02:58 PM

6. maybe she didn't want to live either

and forgive me if there's evidence to the contrary

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Response to renate (Reply #5)

Fri Apr 6, 2012, 03:00 PM

7. We do not know what when on in that house. We do not know what her wishes were.

The whole thing is so horrible. So horrible.

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Response to ScreamingMeemie (Reply #7)

Fri Apr 6, 2012, 03:03 PM

8. We do not know what when on in that house.

hormones pumping, lack of sleep and scared and worried...... the unknown

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Response to renate (Reply #5)

Fri Apr 6, 2012, 03:06 PM

11. I don't believe it was osteogenesis imperfecta in this case, something a little different.

 

In my friend's case it was osteogenesis imperfecta, but CPS was very reluctant to accept the medical findings after they had made up their mind that it was abuse.

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Response to renate (Reply #5)

Fri Apr 6, 2012, 03:20 PM

12. "but what about the children?"

It's the law and the practice everywhere, logic and actual welfare of the child be damned.

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Response to Snake Alchemist (Original post)

Fri Apr 6, 2012, 03:03 PM

9. A very sad situation, to be sure. However, I would expect that child abuse is a much more common

cause for so many broken bones and fractures than a rare genetic disorder. It's a shame that the true cause was not diagnosed sooner, but when a child has that many broken bones, child abuse is bound to be suspected and the child must be protected. They could not risk leaving the baby in the home while they sorted it out. This is a tragedy any way you look at it.

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Response to Snake Alchemist (Original post)

Fri Apr 6, 2012, 03:06 PM

10. OMIGOD.

You don't suppose he killed his wife because he thought she beat the daughter.

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Response to Snake Alchemist (Original post)

Fri Apr 6, 2012, 06:34 PM

18. Well, the murder-suicide thing doesn't exactly make this a sympathetic story. Jayzus H.

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Response to Snake Alchemist (Original post)

Fri Apr 6, 2012, 06:56 PM

20. Tell me again why you believe in God?

What a wonderful God we have, for giving this child this disease, and a father that will kill the child's mother and himself. Oh, and glory of glories! The child died four months later! Such blessings!

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