The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas on April 21, 2001 · Page 10
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The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas · Page 10

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Salina, Kansas
Issue Date:
Saturday, April 21, 2001
Page:
Page 10
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Aid SATURDAY. APRIL 21, 2001 NATION THE SALINA JOURNAL 2 therapists found guilty in girl's *rebirthing' death Governor signs law making rebfrthing illegal; sentences could be up to 48 years By The Associated Press GOLDEN, Colo. — Two therapists were convicted Friday of reckless child abuse in the death of a young girl who begged for her life while wrapped in a flannel sheet during a re- birthing therapy session. jury deliberated for about five hoiirs before returning the verdict. As it was read, Julie Ponder, 40, stared straight ahead, closed her eyes and fought tears. Connell Watkins, 54, showed little emotion. The two women, who face up to 48 years in prison when sentenced June 18, were taken away in handcuffs by sheriff's deputies. Their bond was raised from $40,000 to $200,000. Ponder cried when a deputy handcuffed her, and Watkins angrily screamed "Wait!" as a Jefferson County Sheriff's investigator approached with handcuffs. Watkins leaned over to hug her adult daughter Teka Cooil, who attended the trial each day and told her she was sorry Lawyers for the women declined to comment on the verdict. Mary Davis, the child's biological grandmother, cried and hugged those around her in the courtroom after hearing the verdict. Watkins also was convicted of unlawfully practicing psychotherapy, criminal impersonation and obtaining a signature by deception. Each count carries a maximum 18-month sentence. Candace Newmaker, 10, died April 19, 2000, one day after undergoing the therapy session at Watkins' Evergreen clinic. The coroner ruled Candace died of asphyxiation. The defense argued other factors may have caused her death. "This was not child abuse," Pender's lawyer, Joan Heller, told the jury "This was done for therapy This was done for all the best intentions — to try to make sure that this child got a chance." Candace was being treated at Watkins' Evergreen office for reactive detachment disorder, an inability to form loving relationships because of early trauma. She was wrapped in a flannel sheet to simulate a womb while four adults pushed against her with pillows. The hope was that she would emerge "reborn" to bond with her adoptive mother, Jeane Newmaker of Durham, N.C. On Tuesday, Gov. Bill Owens signed a law outlawing rebirthing therapy Prosecutors' key evidence was a videotape of the 70-minute session. Candace could be heard on the tape pleading for her life, saying she could not breathe and had vomited and defecated. After about 50 minutes, Candace's whimpering trailed off. Several jurors and others in the courtroom cried a§ the tape was played. A forensic pathologist who reviewed autopsy results for the defense testified Candace may have died as a result of the powerful medications she was taking. TOHIO PROTESTS 63 people indicted in Ohio rioting By The Associated Press CINCINNATI — Sixty-three people were indicted in the rioting over the fatal police shooting of an unarmed black man earlier this month, a prosecutor said Friday Charges ranged from misdemeanor resisting arrest to felpnies including aggravated rioting and breaking and entering,. Hamilton County prosecutor Michael Allen said. -Three days of violent protests and rioting followed the April 7 shooting of Timothy Thomas, 19. Dozens of people were injured, more than 800 arrests were made, and arson damage was estimated to top $200,000. The mayor imposed Cincinnati's first citywide curfew since the race riots of 1968. A grand jury handling the case spent a week reviewing subpoenaed videotapes from local television stations, and Allen said he expects more indictments to follow. At a news conference, the prosecutor showed videotaped scenes of black youths pulling a white truck driver from his cab and beating him. Allen said offenses like that could bring stiffer punishment under an Ohio "hate crimes" law. All but one of the defendants are black. "Those who chose to take advantage of the situation by breaking the law have got to be punished," Allen said. "The quickest way to have these acts happen again is to ignore it or to tolerate it." Prosecutors need to be evenhanded in administering justice, a black clergyman said Friday. Black residents are watching to see whether authorities punish police officers who may have.broken the law, said the Rev. H.L. Harvey Jn, whose Cincinnati church served as host this week for a speak-out forum for young black people. "I'm against violence, period. I don't care who it is, white or black, I'm against violence. If you' did wrong, breaking in or setting a fire, you've got to be punished for it," Harvey said. r^^BioGuard Pool School I^SJPGOV&^P " April 23, products 6:30 p.m. oau^« 6:30 p.m. 823-7512 SUNFLOWER 5 STAII CUSTOM EXHAUST M&M Tire & Auto % 263-7110 AUTOCA «e -CEdren 400 N. BuGkeire Ave / Abilene Bur S.8tli/PlinBt«n. indLCrnrfDrt lanUDnipnUI rMcDonaidSHHH lo SAJLINA , Ks Hurry! One Day Only! Doni Miss it! Payless Cashways Saturday, Aprii 21,2001! Save Big! SSALE We've Over Bought!—Our OVER INVENTORY SALE means big savings for you! $20 OFF 34.99 20-LIGHT COMBO PATH LIGHT SO^'OFF ALL IN-STOCK CLAMPS Items vary by store. Limited to stocic on hand. Hurry in for best selection! Sdina, KS (#ii8) 707 N. BROADWAY (785) 827-9666 Make your PrO ect Card® your first tool for any home innprovement! price wood and oltier commodity items ore subject to change without notice. Althougli we cannot be held responsible tor printing errors, we welcome customer's comments and recommendations. 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