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Schatz parents sentenced Another adoption gone wrong


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Lillybee (06/11/11 09:28:39)

Per the local newspaper

OROVILLE — A Paradise couple convicted of whipping an adopted daughter to death and injuring two other children were sentenced Friday to upper terms in state prison.

Butte County Superior Court Judge Kristen Lucena sentenced Kevin Paul Schatz, 48, to serve at least 22 years of two life terms for second-degree murder and torture. Elizabeth Hazel Schatz, 44, was sentenced to serve 13 years, four months for voluntary manslaughter and infliction of unlawful corporal punishment.

Both Schatzes were also sentenced to six months county jail for misdemeanor cruelty to a child. They were credited for time served.

Addressing the defendants, Lucena said their punishment of whipping their children for hours with a thin, 15-inch length of plumbing supply line was inappropriate.

"No civilized society would tolerate that," Lucena said.

The sentences were largely known in advance because of a plea bargain April 8. The couple had faced charges of first-degree murder, torture and two possible life sentences.

Before the sentence was handed down, a surviving adopted daughter, 12, addressed the court. With a soft-spoken voice that was often punctuated with tearful sobs, she said her 7-year-old sister, Lydia, meant the world to her and Lydia's death really hurt.

"Why did you adopt her? To kill her?" the daughter asked.

The Schatzes were arrested after they called 9-1-1 for Lydia after she had stopped breathing on Feb. 6, 2010. A follow-up investigation by Paradise Police

to the Schatzes' residence found the other daughter in the house, limping.

As part of a punishment for reportedly mispronouncing words, both girls had been whipped for hours by Kevin Schatz with the supply line. Elizabeth Schatz reportedly assisted. Lydia was whipped for about seven hours on Feb. 5, while her sister was punished for similar period the night before. A 10-year-old biological son was also injured.

The repeated whipping caused a breakdown in muscle tissue that severely damaged the girls' organs.

Lydia was taken to the hospital, but she later died from her injuries. The other daughter was hospitalized for similar injuries, but eventually recovered.

The older daughter said she would ultimately forgive the Schatzes, but was confused by the actions and condemned their use of corporal punishment.

"I don't know what I did to deserve what you did to me," she said.

As the daughter made her statement, the Schatzes sat facing forward, not looking at the girl. They did sometimes bow their heads and wiped their faces.

Earlier in the hearing, Elizabeth Schatz asked for the daughter's forgiveness. She said Feb. 6, 2010, was the saddest day of her life because their actions killed a daughter, severely injured another and tore their family apart. She said she wished that they had paused to consider the repercussions of their actions.

"We surely would've deviated from the foolish path we ended up taking," Elizabeth Schatz said.

Kevin Schatz apologized for what happened.

"I accept full responsibility for the injury and death of my two daughters," he said.

Michael Harvey, Kevin Schatz's attorney, said most know it's inappropriate to shake a baby, but few had heard of the medical condition that could be caused by Schatzes' disciplinary method.

"This is a tragic case," Harvey said. "It's an example of trying to do the right thing in a wrong way."

Kevin Sears, Elizabeth Schatz's attorney, said the case was a tragedy and didn't dispute the death or injury. However, he asserted the probation report wasn't wholly accurate. In particular, he said the hours of whipping were interrupted with periods of prayer and reflection.

District Attorney Mike Ramsey said the Schatzes have often characterized their actions as inappropriate discipline, which he said showed a lack of insight. While acknowledging the death and injuries weren't intentional, he said their actions, including the whippings and other punishments, were over the top.

MamaJunebug.freekatie (06/11/11 09:35:53)

Why are the Pearls skating on this? Has no one thought to ask the Schatzes, "Whyever didyou use PLUMBING line?"

Lillybee (06/11/11 09:38:11)

I think that had this case gone to trial, the Pearls would have been brought up. At least I hope it would have been. DA Ramsey on every very short TV interview did mention the plumbing hose.

Hopewell (06/11/11 09:41:05)

I wonder if the lawyers asked this in the questioning? Would they really answer "well we read it wouldn't leave marks.." Honestly--way to make a kid hate Jesus, hate religion, hate parents and hate the world.

MamaJunebug.freekatie (06/11/11 09:44:02)

Good to know, and good for the DA!!

Lillybee (06/11/11 09:49:25)

I read a while ago that the Schatzs were planning on having their older bio children learn how to beat the younger adopted children. I hope that all of their children will be able to grow up to be healthy people who can ignore their scars.

Remember Michael Pearl laughed about this story.

booksnbeats (06/11/11 09:52:11)

This is right near where I grew up. It's also a very economically depressed area. How sad.

Austin (06/11/11 10:57:53)

The fact that the influence of the Pearls and their influence and responsibility for this child's death is a travesty.

Yeah, it's really funny, Michael Pearl, you POS. I hope you are inflicted with 1000 times the misery you've inflicted on families and children.

SnarkyJan (06/11/11 11:03:43)

I wish this case had gone to trial so that the Pearls, along with the Schatzes, would be exposed in public as the sick fucks they truly are.

Sola (06/11/11 15:39:39)

Oh COME ON!

You'd have to be a moron to think that WHIPPING a seven year old with a 15 inch plastic plumbing line over SEVEN hours isn't going to cause serious harm.

No excuse, none whatsoever.

Lillybee (06/11/11 15:45:40)

I think that these people much like Emma wanted their adopted children to turn into robot fundie children immediately and hence the severe beatings began.

This is another set of children adopted from a very different culture, different language and expected to fit right into the QF lifestyle as soon as they arrived.

Mompom (06/11/11 15:52:06)

One thing you learn as a parent eventually, is that you can't control the outcome. You can love or not love. Too bad they learned that what they thought was love was NOT love and that control is futile and deadly.

This to me is the danger in these circles. Not all people feel this way, but many parenting "gurus" in fundieland seem to think that you can actually control who your children become!

Why not view kids as a present to unwrap little by little as little pieces of who they are emerge to form the big picture that keeps on changing even as an adult?

We're always changing and growing. I am so sad for this entire family as I think they had the tools to do right and fell into the bad camp. I think if they would have been idealistic attachment parenting types, or diehard boy scout leaders or something, they would have had a great family. They could be camping at Yosemite this summer. Instead they chose the dumb, not fun way which in their case ended in DEATH. Wow. It's really hard to believe isn't it?

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Guest Anonymous

I have ZERO sympathy for Mr. and Mrs. Schatz. They murdered one child and came close to killing a second. Just what "right thing" did they think they were doing by whipping these kids for hours ? I can't believe that their attorney tried to mitigate what they did by asserting that the beatings were interrupted by hours of prayer and reflection. So that makes it all right? The only good thing to come of this is that the Schatzes' other children will not be subjected to their parents' influence while growing to adulthood. I only hope that these kids weren't consigned to equally crazy households.

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Elle (06/13/11 08:48:55)

And to think, plenty of good people are turned down for adoption because of diabetes, in-remission cancer, and other things that don't have an effect on one's ability to parent. (Speaking from personal experience on this one. I'm good enough to parent the daughter I gave birth to, but not to parent an adopted child, solely because of a past illness.) I wonder how these sick fucks do it. How do they pass the screening? Where do they come up with the money? Why the hell are they even adopting children if they won't love them and treat them well?

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May they both burn in hell. And I'm an Atheist, but the sentiment is the only thing that fits what I wish on these monsters.

When I think of what that baby was put through I could vomit.

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Elizabeth Schatz should have gotten the same sentence as her husband. She was just as guilty as he was.

I wonder if they will be put in general population? Child murderers are on the bottom of the prison hierarchy, and other prisoners tend to not take to well to them.

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Elizabeth Schatz should have gotten the same sentence as her husband. She was just as guilty as he was.

I wonder if they will be put in general population? Child murderers are on the bottom of the prison hierarchy, and other prisoners tend to not take to well to them.

I agree. 22 and 13 years doesn't even come close to the punishment they deserve.

I hope with all that's in me that they are put in general population, and have guards that are quick to turn a blind eye. They deserve what they doled out to those innocent children, to be turned around on them.

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Does anyone know where the older adopted girl that survived lives now? Did she become legally free for adoption? I hope a good family that can help her through this trauma has taken her in. What she said at the trial was so heartbreaking.

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Lillybee (06/11/11 09:28:39)

I was thinking, if they are indeed remorseful and have enough functioning neurons to introspect and engage in some critical thinking, they should come out and say where they got the idea to beat the kids like this, publicize the heck out of it and maybe even sue the Pearls for giving them that advice.

I don't know if much about law, but I do know that if I in my profession told somebody to do something to their kid that ended up killing the kid, I would get sued seven ways from sunday until i was living under a bridge and eating from dumpsters.

Those poor kids. I look at my daughter and think of the way my parents used to beat me for doing normal kid things because it showed a 'rebellious spirit,' etc etc etc, and I cannot even fathom how they could stomach those beatings, which were much less severe than this.

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I'm personally waiting for the day Jesus himself storms inside the court room, wielding a piece of plumbing and beats the shit out these 'people'.

Oh what a day that will be.

In the meantime, I am willing to step up to the plate. I am sure if I told Home Depot about my cause, they would be willing to donate the plumbing.

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Elizabeth Schatz should have gotten the same sentence as her husband. She was just as guilty as he was.

I wonder if they will be put in general population? Child murderers are on the bottom of the prison hierarchy, and other prisoners tend to not take to well to them.

The California prison yard is pretty efficient in doling out justice for* crimes against children.

*Edited a word

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The California prison yard is pretty efficient in doling out justice for* crimes against children.

*Edited a word

A security guards at my hospital use to work in a prison and said they would turn a blind eye when a child abuser was beaten up, and the prisoners always knew they could beat him but not so severely hospitalisation (and therefore paperwork!) would be required.

Hopefully that's satisying for some people to read.

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I have ZERO sympathy for Mr. and Mrs. Schatz. They murdered one child and came close to killing a second. Just what "right thing" did they think they were doing by whipping these kids for hours ? I can't believe that their attorney tried to mitigate what they did by asserting that the beatings were interrupted by hours of prayer and reflection. So that makes it all right? The only good thing to come of this is that the Schatzes' other children will not be subjected to their parents' influence while growing to adulthood. I only hope that these kids weren't consigned to equally crazy households.

Elizabeth Schatz should have gotten the same sentence as her husband. She was just as guilty as he was.

I wonder if they will be put in general population? Child murderers are on the bottom of the prison hierarchy, and other prisoners tend to not take to well to them.

I completely agree with both of you. I think that they both should have gotten life without parole. (The death sentence would be to good for them. They deserve to get the rest of their lives to think about what they did.)

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Guest Anonymous

The California prison yard is pretty efficient in doling out justice for* crimes against children.

*Edited a word

And it couldn't happen to a nicer couple

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