Suffer the Little Children, Part Three

ElzbietPlackowska

Plackowska, the cold-blooded child murderer (courtesy of the Chicago Sun-Times)

Although I feel it necessary to write about children who are abused or killed, mostly to raise awareness and to urge people to protect our youth, these sorts of stories always make me sick to my stomach. The latest comes from my home town of Chicago, Illinois.

Marta Dworakowski is a nurse who works the night shift at a hospital close to her suburban home. Around 10:00 Tuesday evening, she phoned home to see how things were going for her babysitter, 40-year-old Elzbieta Plackowska, and to check on her 5-year-old daughter.

There was no answer, even after repeated attempts, and Dworakowski feared the worst. She phoned the police and asked them to visit her home, which they did early the next morning.

That’s when they found Dworakowski’s daughter and Plackowska’s 8-year-old son. Both were dead from multiple stab wounds, as were  the family’s two dogs.

Plackowska was picked up later after she arrived at a relative’s home covered in blood. She now faces first-degree murder charges.

The ensuing investigation revealed that Plackowska had been fighting with her husband about returning to her native Poland. She even claimed to be hearing demonic voices, which undoubtedly indicates some level of mental illness.

The worst thing about these murders is the way Plackowska killed these children. They were jumping on the bed, so Plackowska asked them to stop and to get down on their knees to pray before bedtime. Apparently, the children figured out what was about to happen and pleaded for their lives, but it didn’t help. Plackowska slit their throats, stabbed Dworakowski’s daughter 50 times and her own son 100 times. She then killed both dogs before fleeing.

A memorial is set up outside townhome Thursday morning November 01 2012 where two children two pets were found killed

A memorial outside the home (courtesy of Chicago Sun-Times)

How many times must children die at the hands of their caregivers before we as a society take action? Babysitters, nannies and other child care workers are often trusted simply because they care about kids, or seem to. However, there should always be background checks, calls to references and other precautionary measures before we hand our children over to them. And even then, parents need to keep a close eye on their kids.

Dworakowski seemed to be doing just that when she called to check on her daughter. I have no idea whether she took any of the aforementioned precautions, but even if she did, they obviously didn’t help. People with clean records and backgrounds are just as likely to lose control or suffer from undiagnosed mental illnesses, so there is always a degree of uncertainty. The key is to minimize risk as much as possible.

Of course, this won’t help Dworakowski now that her child is dead, but hopefully other parents will learn from her example and do whatever is necessary to protect their own children from harm. Perhaps then we will stop seeing so many tragic stories in the media, and I for one cannot wait for that day to come.

Posted on November 1, 2012, in Family, Perspectives and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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