'Off-grid' couple faces hearing to regain custody of 10 children

rockin'robin

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GARFIELD, KY (WAVE) – A couple faces a hearing Monday to regain custody of their 10 children, whom Child Protective Services put into foster care Wednesday following a confrontation between their mother and a Breckinridge County sheriff's deputy .

“I don't know where my children are but if you have them, tell them we miss and love them dearly,” a post on Nicole Naugler's Facebook page, Blessed Little Homestead, read on Friday. “My heart is broken. I have been trying to keep busy with the legal stuff to keep my mind busy. It's going to be the longest weekend of my life.”

Nicole and Joe Naugler are facing charges in a case that has prompted an outcry on social media from supporters of their family's “off-the-grid” lifestyle.

Neighbor Travis Metcalf isn't buying it.

“They're living underneath tarps,” he said. “So kinda take it at that.”

“No Trespassing” signs mark the perimeter of the Naugler's 27-acre homestead, located off of a gravel road. Facebook page photos reveal tarps cover the wood framing that serves as the family's quarters. There is no wired electricity, only generators. No running water and no toilets; only shallow latrines or slop buckets.

Dozens of photos posted on the social media page show the children playing in snow or mud.

“They delivered a baby up there last winter,” Metcalf said. “It was about 30 degrees below zero; it's no living conditions for a kid at all.”

The children do not attend formal schools. Postings allude to a “free-schooling” approach in which parents provide “life lessons” to each child at his or her own pace.

The Nauglers have depended upon neighbors' private wells or municipal hookups for their drinking water, but a confrontation on Sunday prompted a criminal summons for Joe Naugler on a charge of menacing.

“(Naugler) was turned down for the water request and asked to leave the property,” the summons read. “He then said to his son ‘get the pistol out of the glove compartment box.'”

WAVE 3 News has withheld the complainant's name at her request.

“He (Naugler) was acting very erratically,” the complainant said in an interview Friday. “He was calling us names that I have to spell out. I can't even say 'em. And he said ‘don't worry, I know where you live, and I'm gonna be back.'”

On Wednesday a sheriff's deputy went to the Nauglers, summons in hand, attempting to conduct a welfare check for Child Protective Services. He wanted to speak with two of their sons, who reportedly witnessed the water confrontation.

A website run by a supporter of Nicole Naugler posted the audio recordings of her encounter with the deputy:


Deputy: You are standing the chance of having your children removed,

Nicole Naugler: For what, under what grounds?
Deputy: Let me just finish...
Nicole Naugler: For what, for not complying? I have constitutional rights, I have rights as a parent and my children won't speak to anybody without my permission, without an attorney or a lawyer.


The recordings detail several minutes of similar discourse. The deputy warned Nicole Naugler she faced felony charges of interference and could lose custody by court order if she continued to deny CPS access to question her children.

The confrontations would end with both parties yelling and Nicole Naugler in cuffs.


Deputy: Ma'am, sit down!
Nicole Naugler: You cannot kidnap my son!
Deputy: You're gonna be under arrest.
Nicole Naugler: You can shoot me dead, shoot me dead but you won't kidnap my son!
Deputy: Ma'am, You need to sit down in that car!
Nicole Naugler: Shoot me!


Nicole Naugler was taken into custody and charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.

“The kids are in four foster homes,” said family friend Pace Ellsworth.

Ellsworth's crowd-sourcing site, Capistan, has been raising money to help Nicole Naugler open a dog-grooming business in Radcliff.

“We chose to invest in Nicole because of her industriousness and uncompromising intention to lift her family out of their indigent circumstances,” a Capistan news release read in part. “Her drive to save her family from their current financial and legal circumstances, mixed with her outstanding customer validation history, confirm that we made the correct decision.”

“A CPS visit with her today went well,” Ellsworth said by telephone Friday. “They're looking forward to getting the children back."

Other support groups have started raising funds to cover the Naugler's legal costs.
Nicole Naugler is scheduled to appear in court on her criminal charges Tuesday, May 12.

http://www.foxcarolina.com/story/29...aces-hearing-to-regain-custody-of-10-children
 

hoichi

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GARFIELD, KY (WAVE) – A couple faces a hearing Monday to regain custody of their 10 children, whom Child Protective Services put into foster care Wednesday following a confrontation between their mother and a Breckinridge County sheriff's deputy .

“I don't know where my children are but if you have them, tell them we miss and love them dearly,” a post on Nicole Naugler's Facebook page, Blessed Little Homestead, read on Friday. “My heart is broken. I have been trying to keep busy with the legal stuff to keep my mind busy. It's going to be the longest weekend of my life.”

Nicole and Joe Naugler are facing charges in a case that has prompted an outcry on social media from supporters of their family's “off-the-grid” lifestyle.

Neighbor Travis Metcalf isn't buying it.

“They're living underneath tarps,” he said. “So kinda take it at that.”

“No Trespassing” signs mark the perimeter of the Naugler's 27-acre homestead, located off of a gravel road. Facebook page photos reveal tarps cover the wood framing that serves as the family's quarters. There is no wired electricity, only generators. No running water and no toilets; only shallow latrines or slop buckets.

Dozens of photos posted on the social media page show the children playing in snow or mud.

“They delivered a baby up there last winter,” Metcalf said. “It was about 30 degrees below zero; it's no living conditions for a kid at all.”

The children do not attend formal schools. Postings allude to a “free-schooling” approach in which parents provide “life lessons” to each child at his or her own pace.

The Nauglers have depended upon neighbors' private wells or municipal hookups for their drinking water, but a confrontation on Sunday prompted a criminal summons for Joe Naugler on a charge of menacing.

“(Naugler) was turned down for the water request and asked to leave the property,” the summons read. “He then said to his son ‘get the pistol out of the glove compartment box.'”

WAVE 3 News has withheld the complainant's name at her request.

“He (Naugler) was acting very erratically,” the complainant said in an interview Friday. “He was calling us names that I have to spell out. I can't even say 'em. And he said ‘don't worry, I know where you live, and I'm gonna be back.'”

On Wednesday a sheriff's deputy went to the Nauglers, summons in hand, attempting to conduct a welfare check for Child Protective Services. He wanted to speak with two of their sons, who reportedly witnessed the water confrontation.

A website run by a supporter of Nicole Naugler posted the audio recordings of her encounter with the deputy:


Deputy: You are standing the chance of having your children removed,

Nicole Naugler: For what, under what grounds?
Deputy: Let me just finish...
Nicole Naugler: For what, for not complying? I have constitutional rights, I have rights as a parent and my children won't speak to anybody without my permission, without an attorney or a lawyer.


The recordings detail several minutes of similar discourse. The deputy warned Nicole Naugler she faced felony charges of interference and could lose custody by court order if she continued to deny CPS access to question her children.

The confrontations would end with both parties yelling and Nicole Naugler in cuffs.


Deputy: Ma'am, sit down!
Nicole Naugler: You cannot kidnap my son!
Deputy: You're gonna be under arrest.
Nicole Naugler: You can shoot me dead, shoot me dead but you won't kidnap my son!
Deputy: Ma'am, You need to sit down in that car!
Nicole Naugler: Shoot me!


Nicole Naugler was taken into custody and charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.

“The kids are in four foster homes,” said family friend Pace Ellsworth.

Ellsworth's crowd-sourcing site, Capistan, has been raising money to help Nicole Naugler open a dog-grooming business in Radcliff.

“We chose to invest in Nicole because of her industriousness and uncompromising intention to lift her family out of their indigent circumstances,” a Capistan news release read in part. “Her drive to save her family from their current financial and legal circumstances, mixed with her outstanding customer validation history, confirm that we made the correct decision.”

“A CPS visit with her today went well,” Ellsworth said by telephone Friday. “They're looking forward to getting the children back."

Other support groups have started raising funds to cover the Naugler's legal costs.
Nicole Naugler is scheduled to appear in court on her criminal charges Tuesday, May 12.

http://www.foxcarolina.com/story/29...aces-hearing-to-regain-custody-of-10-children

So....let me see...
Kids were playing in mud...(the horror), kids where playing in snow. (The horror), they were using water from a neighjbours well and the neughbour turned them down..nice nieghboir all round. The state kidnaps the kids why again?
Nuts.
Ive literally witnessed the state give kids back to crack whores and needle poked junkie mothers in my time,yet this couple gets theirs kidnapped why?
Arguing with a sharrif?
Living of Grid?
letting their kids play in mud and snow?
Maybe im missing something
Mmmm
 
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rockin'robin

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I realize this is in Kentucky....:hmm:...but it's 2015...the kids are not going to school, have no running water or electricity...and it's gets cold in Kentucky!....Seems to me the father would sell some of his land and be able to build a house with running water and electricity?....And have the kids in school to learn and get an education....??...but this is Kentucky!....
 

Jezie

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This entire story is messed up.... The police had no right to demand to talk to the children after the parents denied access...
 

hoichi

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I realize this is in Kentucky....:hmm:...but it's 2015...the kids are not going to school, have no running water or electricity...and it's gets cold in Kentucky!....Seems to me the father would sell some of his land and be able to build a house with running water and electricity?....And have the kids in school to learn and get an education....??...but this is Kentucky!....

They had water from the nighbours well, they were using generators for what exactly?
What do generators generate?
As for theie education the parents were educating them.
So why did the state kidnap the kids again?
 

Reba

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Maybe it's because the father threatened violence to the water neighbor, and the mother yelled, "Shoot me!" They seem to have self-control issues.
 

hoichi

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Maybe it's because the father threatened violence to the water neighbor, and the mother yelled, "Shoot me!" They seem to have self-control issues.

Maybe.
maybes are always fun, maybe..
 

rockin'robin

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“No Trespassing” signs mark the perimeter of the Naugler's 27-acre homestead, located off of a gravel road. Facebook page photos reveal tarps cover the wood framing that serves as the family's quarters. There is no wired electricity, only generators. No running water and no toilets; only shallow latrines or slop buckets.

“They delivered a baby up there last winter,” Metcalf said. “It was about 30 degrees below zero; it's no living conditions for a kid at all.”

The children do not attend formal schools. Postings allude to a “free-schooling” approach in which parents provide “life lessons” to each child at his or her own pace.


:hmm:....would sound "alright" maybe 50 years ago...but today?...Do the Amish live the same way?....Don't think so....

And seems the Mother, not the Father...wants to make a better life for her children....
 

Jezie

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Okay...I am curious... What is wrong with the way they live their life and raise their children? I will admit it is not normal...but what is wrong with it?
 

rockin'robin

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Okay...I am curious... What is wrong with the way they live their life and raise their children? I will admit it is not normal...but what is wrong with it?

True, it's not normal...just "normal" to them I'm guessing...I also grew up in the "backwoods" with no electricity or water....outdoor toilet also. Very unsanitary I'm telling you...my grandmother bathed us maybe once a month and not at all during the winter months...we had no generators, just 1 big fireplace....We had to pump our water....We went to school if we had shoes, if not then we stayed home....Lived off the land.

No way would I wish it upon any child tho'.. and no reason for a child to live that way today....But again, not everybody feels that way.
 

Jezie

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True, it's not normal...just "normal" to them I'm guessing...I also grew up in the "backwoods" with no electricity or water....outdoor toilet also. Very unsanitary I'm telling you...my grandmother bathed us maybe once a month and not at all during the winter months...we had no generators, just 1 big fireplace....We had to pump our water....We went to school if we had shoes, if not then we stayed home....Lived off the land.

No way would I wish it upon any child tho'.. and no reason for a child to live that way today....But again, not everybody feels that way.

I can see what you say. But as a society we really should not worry about it unless the children are being harmed. In this situation, the kids are no being harmed.
As a child I have also lived without running water and had a gennie that we would sometimes use... So know about that one, although I was placed in schools opa would homeschool me as well... I have also lived on a boat...these are just different ways to raise a kid. Honestly I wish more kids were raised in these types of situations. The only question I have is the qualifications of the homeschooling.
 

DeafDucky

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It's 'normal'/ fine to take water from the neighbor's water well? I can see why the neighbor said no (regardless of if the neighbor is nice or not). The neighbor could have considered them stealing their water.
 

rockin'robin

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It's 'normal'/ fine to take water from the neighbor's water well? I can see why the neighbor said no (regardless of if the neighbor is nice or not). The neighbor could have considered them stealing their water.

Feel the neighbor got tired of them taking water from their well...when the Father could have dug his own well....:hmm:...seems to me the Father isn't doing much for the benefit of his children (all 10 of them)....it's the Mother who wants a better life for them as per the story.....Must be awfully hard to start a business with 10 kids tho'.....
 

Jezie

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Seeings as they asked it does not seem like a take or a steal...and honest request....I will admit that they need to have access to water a well or spring at the very least. But they were also depending on the city water.... I have issue with the possible threat about grabbing a handgun...but it is only mentioned once and not included into the rest so not sure how much water that argument holds as to if the neighbor was threatened or not....
 

Crickets

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Feel the neighbor got tired of them taking water from their well...when the Father could have dug his own well....:hmm:...seems to me the Father isn't doing much for the benefit of his children (all 10 of them)....it's the Mother who wants a better life for them as per the story.....Must be awfully hard to start a business with 10 kids tho'.....

The mother is 5 months pregnant with child #11. (http://www.rawstory.com/2015/05/ken...custody-of-10-kids-over-apparent-unschooling/)

I would think the parents will at minimum need to show that they can provide safe drinking water for their children before they can get their children back, and since they were getting water from a neighbor who seems to have refused, that could be a problem unless they can provide water for their children themselves. Near where I live, there's a town spring where some people get drinking water for their camps during the summer (they fill up jugs with water from the spring and load them into their car); even something like that may be adequate, but I don't know.

Also, there are minimum standards that must be met regarding homeschooling in each state. If the children can't read at their grade level or other minimum educational requirements aren't being covered (if their education is actually being neglected), the parents will have to show that they have a plan to meet the requirements for homeschooling.

Finally, because there seems to be a threat to a neighbor involving a gun, made in front of some of the children, that is something law enforcement will look into. Possible crimes involving guns - with children around - aren't taken lightly by law enforcement or child services.

The children will be checked over by doctors, and their safety and well-being will be assessed. The parents won't get their kids back until the State of Kentucky believes they'll be returning the kids to a safe home (as far as water, food, clothing, shelter, etc.) and that they're being educated to the required standards.

It doesn't sound to me like there's a question of abuse, but of possible neglect, and that's what will be determined.
 

Steinhauer

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Maybe it's because the father threatened violence to the water neighbor, and the mother yelled, "Shoot me!" They seem to have self-control issues.

Any parent would when a) their kids can no longer drink fresh water and b) their kids were forcibly removed
 

Crickets

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Any parent would when a) their kids can no longer drink fresh water and b) their kids were forcibly removed

If the parents can't afford to provide fresh drinking water (without stealing it and threatening people with a gun when they refuse to allow you to steal it), something more than a shack with a tarp over it to live in, and basic sanitation for their 10 children, then maybe they should stop having more children and concentrate on improving living conditions for the children they already have. From other articles I've seen online about this case, 12 people were living in a 3-walled shanty all through this past winter (one of the coldest, snowiest in recent memory), with piles of trash around it, broken glass, no septic system, etc. If that's true (and it appears to be, according to a photo the mother posted online of the CPS report on the family), then there's no way that child protective services - once notified of the situation - would allow that to continue. The parents will need to show that they can provide a safe home for their children in order to get them back.

The children weren't removed because the family lived off-the-grid or homeschooled or was poor. They were removed because of immediate safety concerns for the children.

Now, the State of Kentucky will likely even be looking at things like what kind of vehicle(s) the parents are driving that can safely transport all 10 (soon to be 11) children with proper booster and safety seats, etc. for the children who need them.
 
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Jezie

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The mother is 5 months pregnant with child #11. (http://www.rawstory.com/2015/05/ken...custody-of-10-kids-over-apparent-unschooling/)

I would think the parents will at minimum need to show that they can provide safe drinking water for their children before they can get their children back, and since they were getting water from a neighbor who seems to have refused, that could be a problem unless they can provide water for their children themselves. Near where I live, there's a town spring where some people get drinking water for their camps during the summer (they fill up jugs with water from the spring and load them into their car); even something like that may be adequate, but I don't know.

Also, there are minimum standards that must be met regarding homeschooling in each state. If the children can't read at their grade level or other minimum educational requirements aren't being covered (if their education is actually being neglected), the parents will have to show that they have a plan to meet the requirements for homeschooling.

Finally, because there seems to be a threat to a neighbor involving a gun, made in front of some of the children, that is something law enforcement will look into. Possible crimes involving guns - with children around - aren't taken lightly by law enforcement or child services.

The children will be checked over by doctors, and their safety and well-being will be assessed. The parents won't get their kids back until the State of Kentucky believes they'll be returning the kids to a safe home (as far as water, food, clothing, shelter, etc.) and that they're being educated to the required standards.

It doesn't sound to me like there's a question of abuse, but of possible neglect, and that's what will be determined.

Schooling is a top priority for kids...I will not argue that...but even in the article it is unclear about the quality of education the children were receiving...
I find it ironic that no one has really seemed to noticed something extremely wrong with this story...
In each article it states to the effect:
"Investigators attempted to question the teens away from their mother, and she was arrested for disorderly conduct and resisting arrest when deputies said she interfered."
It is illegal for law enforcement to talk to the children without parental consent or legal rep appointed by/for the parents...
Everyone seems to look at a lifestyle so different or objectionable to today's standards and miss that the parents rights were completely overrun....
 

Reba

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Any parent would when a) their kids can no longer drink fresh water and b) their kids were forcibly removed
No, they wouldn't if keeping their kids was a priority. They would maintain their composure and take care of the kids first.

Tell me how waving a gun and threatening an unarmed homeowner is going to provide your child with a regular ongoing supply of fresh water, especially if you get sent to jail?

Tell me how screaming "Shoot me, kill me" helps you keep custody of your kids? How are you helping your kids if you get shot or arrested? The kids for sure will be collected up by the system then.
 

Reba

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Authorities can't win. If they take custody of the kids, it's unlawful kidnapping. If they don't do anything it's dereliction of duty, especially if something bad happens to even one of the kids.

They're also stuck with how to question the children. How do authorities question children about possible abuse if the parents are always present? In those cases, don't they assign a guardian ad litem to protect the children's rights during questioning?
 
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