Angel Story: Ashley

On March 7, 2017 my life changed forever! My daughter Ashley was shot in the head by her husband 5 months after they we’re married!

I tried countless times to get her away from him. But, she kept going back.

One minute I’m making a cake & then the phone rings! I rushed to the hospital! In my mind I thought she was ok.

But, she was not! Her loving heart finally stopped beating at 10:30pm later that night!

Angel Story: Brandi

Telling The Story of Brandi

My sister Brandi was a hilarious, caring, vivacious person. She would drive all night if she thought a family member or friend needed help. Her kids were the most important things in her life and she lived every day to make sure they were healthy and happy. As much as she loved others, however, she never thought she deserved the love of others.

Brandi and the importance of her kids

She surrounded herself with boyfriends who never appreciated her worth, and worse, made her believe she had no worth. Each one treated her worst than the last until, one night, one took her life. It was described during pretrial as one of the most vicious, disturbing, and rage-fueled scenes that some veteran police officers had ever witnessed.

Brandi and Her Last Moments

He had beaten her so viciously, we couldn’t even have an open casket at her funeral. The director called us and told us there was nothing she could do to make her viewable. That struck me in places of my heart that I didn’t know could hurt. During the private viewing, we understood why. I won’t describe what we saw that day, but I will say no one should ever be subjected to what we endured that morning.

It tore our family apart and caused so much grief, that my mother’s heart couldn’t take it. She died from a heart attack 3 months later. I share this today in the hopes that one victim will read this and it gives the courage to leave their situation so that their family members will never have to go through what we did.

Angel Story: Name unknown

In October 2007 my worst nightmare came true. My youngest sister, also my best friend, had been shot and was fighting for her life. She was shot by her husband in front of their 7-year-old daughter. She fought fiercely for the next 8 months while she remained hospitalized, three of those in a coma. She was released in May 2008 under the care of my immediate family. For the next 12 1/2 years, she had multiple surgeries to try and save her life; however, she succumbed to her injuries on March 2, 2020. She fought like no other person I knew to live. She kept a smile on her face even when she could barely hold her head up. Her injuries did not stop her from trying to live her fullest life. She was and still is my hero. I miss her every, single day. She leaves a legacy behind and I will continue to honor her while promoting domestic violence awareness.

Angel Baby: Jacob Chiclana

I’ve held this in for so long and I feel it’s been selfish of me to do so considering that so many mothers have been and are still stuck in abusive relationships. They don’t realize exactly how much they can lose in this kind of situation.

I thought I met the love of my life back in high school, Jorge. He was spontaneous, caring, funny, and well a bit weird but so was I. I lost my virginity to him but little did I know that at the time I “gave it up” he was engaged. His mom was marrying him to his gf whose stepfather was to be released from jail and whose mother preferred her husband over her own daughter and so both mothers had them marry young. The worst part is that his gf happened to be an old childhood friend. Upon finding out of his engagement to my old friend I told her about his affair with me but they were minors and still forced to be married.

Years went on and I had my beautiful daughter but her father and I separated while I was pregnant. I left my 1-month old daughter with my mother as I went to go pick up my little sister from school and on our way back we bump into Jorge and our mutual friend Denzel. As soon as he saw me, he raced across es the street with arms open, he was so excited to see me again. I was still filled with rage that he would deceive me, hurt my friend, and ruin our friendship. So my first reaction was to scream at him to stay the hell away from me. Denzel has bout me my first craving when I was pregnant with my daughter and was super overprotective of me, so when he asked to see her, I was more then happy to introduce him to her. When we got back to my mother’s house I let Denzel in but I made Jorge wait outside on the porch. When my mother realized what I had done she scolded me and told me that’s not how you treat people and allowed him in… that was the beginning of the worst years of my life!

Denzel and I just so happen to have the same phone, with the same color, and equally destroyed with scratch marks. Denzel asked me for my number so I gave him my phone that way he can put in his contact and etc. little did I know that while I went to change my daughter, Jorge had Taken my phone and texted his to have my number then deleted the text so I wouldn’t realized. Every day since for about a month he kept calling and calling and bothering nonstop until I finally said yes to being his girlfriend. I really and seriously didn’t want to be and the instant I said yes I felt disgusting but I wanted the harassment to stop and it seemed the easiest way. We started dating and the more he was so sweet to me the more I felt sick to my stomach and thoughts like “was he like this to her when he cheated” “if he did it to her he can do it to me” “they’re still in the divorce process wth am I doing” “She’s currently pregnant can I handle a step child when I myself just became a mother”. I was disturbed with my actions and I was uncomfortable. So I decided to be honest and tell him how I felt and drop the whole relationship. Little did I expect that he would slit his wrist in front me, like who the hell does that? I thought crap like that only happens in movies! And my first reaction was to slap him across the face and tell him he should never do something like that for any female, including myself and I called the ambulance on him. He was locked up in a mental hospital and I was free! Or at least that’s what I thought.

He had memorized my number and kept calling me saying he loved me and begging me to wait. He kept telling me he was in the hospital for me so he can become mentally healthy in order to be a better man for me. I felt such a huge burden on my shoulders and coming from a childhood of physical and sexual abuse, I knew how it felt to be so low and just need someone that supports you at their side. So I caved in. I stood and I waited for him. He got out and continued his therapy and medications and I remained at his side. The more I saw him improve and kept his word the more my disgust and anger turned into love and hope. Next thing you know I was head over heels for him. I was played so well and deeply brainwashed. What could be worse then that? Oh wait… I was pregnant.

Pregnancy was hard my childhood caused me so much trauma that I was eventually diagnosed with PTSD and without my medications it was so hard to manage all of my feelings and moods. It’s put a strain on our relationship but surprisingly we managed to stay together during the entire pregnancy and gave birth to a beautiful baby boy, he was born premature with some health complications. Although during the pregnancy I found out Jorge had cheated on me and I was torn, one of my fears came true. I didn’t want to leave him, and for the life of me I still can’t understand why, but I didn’t want him close to me either. That infuriated him, and around two weeks after Jayden was born Jorge raped me. Yes he was my husband but that doesn’t mean that I’m just some blow up doll that he can snatch at any minute. It is MY body and if I say no he should’ve respected it. I had a fever of 104.5, I was weak and dizzy. I wanted to go to the hospital but he held me down and did as he pleased with me instead. When Jayden was a month old I found out I was pregnant with Jacob. I was devastated! I love all my children but I didn’t want a “rape child” I didn’t want to have any other child by him at all. Now I had to keep on going with my medications raise my daughter and seek help for my son, there was something wrong about him but I couldn’t figure out what.

When Jorge realized I was pregnant he pushed me off our 4 story building and I don’t know what would’ve happened to me if I didn’t latch on to the fire escape and prevented myself from falling splat on the ground. I still suffer from knee pain to this day and this crazy event happened in 2013! I didn’t die and I never told on him… MY MISTAKE! From there on he would grab me and hit me. Whenever he wanted intercourse I’d run to a neighbors apartment and avoided him. I couldn’t bare to have him touch me. He would leave and disappear for a month or two and I would think I was free but then he’d reappeared. He would keep tabs on me and as soon as I let a male friend with developmental delays and legal mental health problems stay over, he found out immediately! He arrived seconds after my friend left accused me of cheating and beat me! That day was the day I gave birth to Jacob.

He was so small he was born at 34weeks and weighed only 4lbs 9oz. And as small as he was it didn’t stop him from being hairy. He also had health complications but he was strong, it didn’t matter if he struggled to breathe, he was always smiling. He was my little sunshine. He got bigger and my three babies were inseparable. I couldn’t have been a prouder mother.

We couldn’t afford our home and made the tough decision to leave the apartment and go to a shelter until we can save up enough money to find a new home we could afford. But in the shelter Jorge choked me. Although it happened in our room, EVERYONE heard it. The shelter called police and DCF and he was removed and not allowed back in the shelter. After a month in the shelter I was offered housing in Norwalk and I accepted it. The shelter helped me with security deposit, they gave me a referral for furniture and they helped me with transportation to get there. I’m so very grateful for all they’ve done. But once I was in the home I get a call… Jorge voluntarily admitted himself to a mental hospital and history repeated itself. I’ll get help I’ll be a better husband and father for you… blah blah blah. I sometimes wish I was deaf so I wouldn’t have heard his B.S. But I did and I never thought of myself as a person that would get a divorce, I’m a hopeless romantic, you know the fight for love, if you love him don’t abandon him, everyone makes mistakes, learn to not hold onto grudges; yep I was that pathetic chick. He got his help and was eventually released from the hospital.

I welcomed him and set some ground rules. And everything was going good, we had our fights but nothing too big. Until his grandmother came down from Puerto Rico and was suppose to come visit us so we tidied up and he placed liquid incense on the table. He knew our son had developmental delays, he knew that the liquid incense holder looked like a cup and yet he didn’t care. Jayden drank the incense and I went frantic I called poison control and I took him to the hospital. Thankfully he was ok and I just thought of that incident as a simple mistake.

He began hitting me again and two weeks after the incident with Jayden, Jacob died….

As is stated earlier Jacob had health complications which included chronic asthma that was dependent on steroids and hypothermia. Jorge spray painted in the apartment even when I fought and begged him not to. Both Jacob and I were chronic asthmatic. Spray paint is such a strong chemical in inhale and even more when using it indoors with no proper ventilation. I phone had no minutes and my dumb self had no idea that you can still reach police even if your phone is disconnected. I was afraid to call the cops because dcf told me that domestic violence can be considered as risk of injury to a minor and that my children could be removed, and I knew that once I tried to run out into the hallway to beg for help and someone to call police, he would attack me and dcf would be contacted as well. So instead I opened up all the windows and Jacob and I went to the farthest room available and we remained there. When it was time for Jacob’s bottle, Jorge made it and gave it to me. Because of the strong odor from the spray paint, I couldn’t smell anything different with the bottle. And just like an alcoholic piña colada, you don’t see the alcohol in the beverage you just get that funky color of yellow and off white mixed together. He poisoned that bottle with alcohol and had me unknowingly feed it to my 5 month old son, my Jacob, my little sunshine! Jacob fell asleep in my arms so peacefully and I placed him in his crib. The next morning I woke up and I felt off. Something was wrong. That’s when it clicked… Jacob has not cried, not once. Jorge tried to keep me in bed telling me he’ll check on him but I couldn’t shake that horrible gut feeling that something was wrong so when he left the room I jumped out of bed to join him. Jacob was in his crib with his favorite fluffy turquoise blanket placed in a perfect spiral on his face. I removed it and saw his pale face with his blue lips. I picked him up and blew air in his face. Rubbed his earlobe, shook him a bit but not too much since I was afraid of that shipment baby syndrome but Jacob didn’t budge. He was lifeless and secretion had already come out of his ears and nose but for some reason I was hoping it was chocolate milk. My son had been dead for hours and I even though I knew he was dead, I was hoping that since doctors have a tendency of being pricks because of their degree and occupation, that they would manage to pull of some magic and help my son. I told Jorge to calm the ambulance but he refused to I called instead and they told us how to administer cot to an infant. But when police came and I led that tall strong black female officer to the room, her reaction killed me a little inside. Her look confirmed he was gone but I decided that denial was better and that the doctors can save him. They took Jacob to the hospital but wouldn’t let me ride with him. That was definitely weird, and also my second confirmation but still I decided to have hope and remain in denial. These doctors are arrogant for a reason, they have their head so far up their tush because they can surprise you with their abilities. I was firm that some form of sleeping beauty miracle was gonna happen for my son. My mother came from Bridgeport and gave me a ride to the hospital where they had us wait in a white room with a bench seat and a few chairs, until the doctors finally came in and confirmed the inevitable. I cried so hard and in my head I hit them with the chairs so many times for letting me down. Suddenly my anger turned into rage, next to me was Jorge crying his crocodile tears. See when you’re with someone for a long period of time you start to realize when they’re lying and when their pain is real. He was throwing a typical telenovela show because his mother was present. But that wasn’t the worst part.

The detective separated us and began to question us….

1. Jorge lied, he stated he taped garbage bags in an attempt to refrain the chemicals from getting to the far end of the apartment where Jacob and I were.

2. They asked for access to the home. Jorge quickly refused, I gave the detective my keys.

3. We were asked if they can perform an autopsy. Thankfully they only need one parent to sign the forms, I’m pretty sure you can guess who did that.

4. Dcf took my babies, if the rest wasn’t killing me already this did the trick. I cried but I didn’t go frantic, I was still in shock. And in my head due to his actions and refusal to cooperate, I felt it best that my kids refrain from being within his grasp.

I couldn’t sleep, I couldn’t eat, I felt like I couldn’t breathe, like someone just gutted me. I was broken. I’d rather be raped, beaten, cut limb per limb; then to have EVER gone through this. I would take it all to be in my sons place. But sadly that’s not how it works.

On the day of his wake I couldn’t take it anymore. I went up to Jorge and told him our babies were taken and we need to make changes and get them back. He looked me so cold and told me that he couldn’t do that then left to greet his dad. At that moment I finally woke up. I don’t need him to make changes, I needed to. I stayed with my mother for a while, made a new friend who surprisingly was also hurt by Jorge. And he helped me with my grief, he helped me get back on my feet, he did the one thing I don’t think I could’ve ever done… he took down Jacob’s crib and boxed up his belongings for me since dcf told me I needed to in order to get my kids back so that they wouldn’t be emotionally harmed expecting Jacob to be there. I was a year without my babies while the detectives did their investigation. In that year I was called by the detectives to “fill in some blanks” and was informed about the alcohol in Jacob’s drink. I leaned back in my chair and chuckled in the detectives face thinking he was lying, I thought he made that up as some sort of reverse psychology, I was wrong. He became furious and slammed the results on the table in front of me and told me it was as strong as a Shot of whiskey! I will never forget those words. He asked who made the bottle, who fed it to him? And I said idk even tho I knew Jorge made it and I fed it…. I was in shock due to the realization that I unwillingly and without any knowledge killed my son, that piece of crap husband of mine handed me the weapon in disguise. He gave me the “loaded gun“. The detective called in his partner and they both asked me. I told the the truth and I was certain I was going to be arrested with Jorge. Mentally I was innocent… I had no idea of the contents in the bottle, it looked like a normal bottle of formula; but physically I was guilty, it was my hand the tilted the bottle in his mouth. But the detective let me go and my mother scolded me afterwards saying I was stupid for going alone. But I had nothing to hide, I had no idea there was alcohol involved until they mentioned, and I desperately wanted to know What killed Jacob. On May 18,2015 Jorge was arrested. One year and two days after Jacob’s death. But was only charged with risk of injury to a minor. 5 months later I got my kids back, we got out of that toxic situation with Jorge, I found strength within myself to pick myself back up after losing my son, but the pain remains, the fear remains, especially since we still have Jayden together.

From one day to the next my life turned upside down and everything that mattered to me was taken, most I got back but my little sunshine is gone forever. Having another child years after that was difficult, I couldn’t eat or sleep right until my son was 7 months and the irony is he looked exactly like Jacob… I mean they looked identical and both had chronic asthma. He barely ever slept in his crib he was always in my arms and no one I mean absolutely no one was allowed to make him bottles. The pain never leaves and there’s no good description of how it feels, and I would never want anything to know how it feels. So I hope this story inspires those who are unwilling or afraid to leave a relationship, to find the strength to leave. The damage can be so much worse. I missed out on Jacoba first words, teeth, first steps, first day of school, I missed out on everything. Instead of having another mommas boy to feed, play with, etc I have an urn to dust and polish. The relationship was not worth it at all. His life was too precious.

Angel Story: Alisha Marie Morgan

Alisha Marie Morgan was a smart beautiful 25 yr old mother of 2 very handsome boys. She was my cousin but with how we were raised made us like sisters. Alisha was kidnapped, held in there previously shared home for hours, and shot and killed by her ex boyfriend and father to the youngest boy. She had left him due to him lying and stealing from her. She was working full time and trying her best to make a good life for her and her boys. She loved them boys more than life itself. And it showed that horrible day. She was approached by him that morning before she could get in the gate at her job by gun point. He told her if she did not go with him he would kill the kids and her mother. So to protect them she went. Little did she know she wouldn’t ever leave that house alive. She called her mom and it almost seemed that she honestly thought he would cool off and let her go. Her mother called the law when she found out he had a gun. The law was on scene for an hour and forty five minutes trying to negotiate. At approx 11am January 21, 2020 he took her life and then his own. Leaving 2 baby boys and a family to grieve a horrible loss. All because he couldn’t face the fact that she was moving on. The hurt and pain and anger we have faced since that day is so heavy at times and unbearable. Its been 9 months and the family still have so many questions. I myself wonder what I could’ve done to stop it. She hid so much so the youngest could still have his dad in his life. We lost someone that can’t be replaced in our lives. If you are reading this and you or someone you know are going thru domestic violence, please get help. Dont keep it quiet out of fear. There is someone who will protect you and yours. Dont be that person or that family. Its a painful thing that I myself still can’t figure out how to cope with it.

Angel Story: Tyesha

I’m telling my daughter story.Tyesha was a 21 yr old beautiful young woman full of life.She was a mother,daughter, sister,auntie,granddaughter,neice.I’m her voice because she was murdered by the father of her children on oct13, 2009.Tyesha was not afraid of her children’s father they argued a lot and she made plans to move from Georgia back to Kansas. He did mean things to Tyesha before trying to get her children taken from her to try to control her.He couldn’t control her because Tyesha was a very strong woman. She loved her family her friends.I have learned a lot about domestic violence since the murder of my daughter Tyesha. I speak about it and gun violence.

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