It’s now illegal for families to seek help for loved ones in Nodaway County, Missouri?


 Correction: Arraignment is set for August, Trial date TBA
C.A.Tusheon | Contributing Writer | July 19, 2011

In Nodaway County, Missouri, an arraignment has been set in August for prosecuting attorney, Robert Rice to push for a trial to prove to a jury beyond a reasonable doubt that family members should be punished and tax payer’s dollars should be wasted on trying to convict Stephanie Sledge, citizen and journalist, for trying to seek immediate treatment for a disoriented family member that was in desperate need of help

Instead of being allowed to help her loved one, she was arrested in a public street for trying to offer information to police at a scene that could very well have helped the individual at the time of need. Instead, Stephanie and the loved one were hauled to the slammer for punishment when she tried to offer up valuable information as to the loved one’s state of mind at the time of the arrest. She was then treated like a hardened criminal and now awaits felony charges of interfering with a police investigation.

What exactly has this county resorted to when people are no longer allowed to be concerned for their loved ones? What is it that this newly elected prosecuting attorney is trying to prove to their community? Will the jury buy it? One would think there is more important crime to tackle then arresting and prosecuting a law abiding citizen for loving and wanting to help her loved one  and then apparently wasting the tax payers dollars to try to convince a jury she should spend the next seven years in prison.

Stephanie made a statement today after a preliminary hearing stating, “It is very difficult for me to understand the point of convicting me for being compassionate and trying to help someone that was in desperate immediate need of treatment. It was the most difficult 24 hours I have ever had to endure sitting in a jail cell when no crime had been committed when all I could do was worry about my loved one. It breaks my heart even more knowing that myself and another family member were taking action to seek the medical treatment needed only to be hauled to jail. Our loved one should have been getting an evaluation by a professional instead of locked in a cell.”

Stephanie also expresses, “although the individual is old enough to take responsibility for themselves, it is our family’s opinion that it was our responsibility to seek help when the individual was unable to do so. We feel the police took unnecessary precautions to make sure they got an arrest and displayed total disregard for the nature of the incident or the mental state of the individual. I can only pray that a jury sees the ridiculous accusations made against not only myself but my family as well. It worries me that the citizens of Nodaway County might get the impression that it is now illegal to help your loved ones when it should be the family’s responsibility when someone is able to do so. Has the nation forgotten about good family morals and values?”

The trial is set for later August at the Nodaway County Courthouse with Honorable Judge Prokes. Stephanie has sought council that seems very confident the jury will see the true intentions of the family to help their loved one and not interfere with any investigation that allegedly was taking place at the time of the arrest. She is also active in the community and voiced her concerns to the city council over the water flouridation program, has several businesses in the community, and remains active about waking up the citizens about important American issues not being covered in the mainstream or AP press.

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