In February 2008, 7-week-old Caitlynne Bohlen of Grand Island died from suffocation after her mother’s boyfriend reportedly placed a pacifier in her mouth, wrapped a blanket around her head and used a pillow to squeeze her against the side of her crib. Twenty-three-year-old Christopher Klein is serving five to seven years in the Nebraska State Penitentiary for manslaughter in her death.
In January 2008, a 28-year-old Omaha man was arrested in the death of his son, 8-month-old Jaiden-Jackson Self. Marquale Self is serving 20 to 32 years for child abuse resulting in his death. Fifteen more times that year, Nebraska children died as the result of child abuse or neglect, ranking the state second behind Florida in the rate of child abuse deaths per 100,000 children.
In 2007 and 2008, Nebraska also ranked in the top three states for the rate of deaths of children from child abuse or neglect: 16 in 2007 and 17 in 2008. The recently released 2009 rankings show Nebraska had improved to 18th in the country in the rate of deaths, not including the District of Columbia. Last year, the state recorded 10. Nationally, child abuse deaths have increased in recent years. In 2009, the official number reported by the National Child Abuse and Neglect Data Systems was 1,676. The National Coalition to End Child Abuse believes the number is higher, closer to 2,500 a year.
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By the time you finish reading this, 15 children will have been abused; In the next five minutes, 30 more; Within the next hour, 360 more; And by tonight, close to 8,000+ children will have suffered from abuse, 5 of which will die. Child abuse has increased 134% since 1980 and is now considered a worldwide epidemic. The high jump in child abuse deaths and the shocking increase in statistics highlights the frightening lack of public knowledge.
Educate Yourself -- Learn the Facts
It May Just Save a Child's Life!!