I am not good at some of these practicalities. I will be the first to admit it. That is why I have been asking for help. If I were not 2600 miles away I might be able to be of more practical help.
Nancy has two basic problems that play into each other. The first is the accusation that triggered all this - the accusation that her 18 y/o son molested his younger sister. This single accusation has spiraled into multiple accusations some or all of which may have been implanted and/or fabricated (think of the McMartin pre-school case and similar hysteria). Or, some or all of them may be true. Right now, it just isn't known. Nancy's son Nick has been arrested and is sitting in jail, as the family doesn't have the resources to pay a bail bondsman. So no one is at any risk from him (if indeed he was a risk in the first place, which is yet to be determined). Her son has yet to be appointed even a public defender as of my last information. I think that the family is trying to scrape together some funds for a private defense attorney.
He was 3 weeks away from graduating from High School when all this happened.
The second problem derives from the unconstitutional assumption that Nick is guilty until proven innnocent. The next fundamental assumption that Nancy and James, as the parents, must have known that their son was engaging in criminal activity with his sister and that they, as parents, were neglectful in not stopping it. I can't wrap my brain around the convolutions of this. I also know that it is very common in cases of sexual child abuse (and I would guess that close to 30% of my patients are survivors of such abuse) for the perpetrator to be so savvy that NO ONE, NO ONE, even suspects until and unless the victim decides to speak up. The commonest scenario I have seen for child sexual abuse seems to be daughters being molested by the mom's boyfriend or current partner. Not to say that it doesn't happen other ways - it does. And I am not denying the life long traumatic effects of being molested by a trusted family member. They are real and they are ghastly. But I also know that children have vivid imaginations and that they can be exposed to lots of sexually charged scenarios just by watching daytime and prime time TV. And anyone who has parented more that one child knows how easily one can persuade a child to tell stories. The boundaries between fact and fiction can be very difficult even for adults to negotiate - look at the successes of various works of fiction in persuading even well educated adults that the history they learned growing up was a big lie. (Think all the various conspiracy theorists across the political spectrum, consider Oliver Stone's film JFK, Dan Brown's book the Da Vinci Code, the movie 'birth of a nation', to name just a few). If educated adults who have abundant free will can be manipulated so easily, what do you think happens to children under pressure? Anyhow, I digress.
Nancy also needs an independant attorney for herself and probably a separate one for her husband. The court-appointed ones do not seem to be advocating at all for them or for the real needs of her children. This also takes money.
I will be the first to say that I am absolutely lousy when it comes to money. I am pretty sure that there needs to be some kind of legal defense fund set up her but I don't have the first idea of what to do or how to do it. Anyone who has any suggestions, go for it. The comments box is open to you. But please don't ask me to be the banker. I can't. I can and will pray. I can and will try to marshall resources. I will write letters, post updates, and do all that kind of stuff in between taking care of my family and my job.
Tomorrow I will be on call for 24 hours and will probably not be able to post anything. But don't let that stop you.