An Ice Cream Truck Abduction

Eleven year old Mikelle Biggs had been waiting for the ice cream truck with her younger sister, Kimber. Like most young children, Kimber had grown cold and lost her patience, and decided to go home. Upon arriving home, her mother had immedately sent her back out to tell Mikelle to come home too.

Kimber, in total, had only been gone 90 seconds, but in that short window of time, Mikelle was abducted. The rear wheel of the bike that Mikelle had been riding, still spinning, left behind. A neighbor with a criminal past had caught the eye of investigators, but not having enough evidence to charge him, they had to leave him alone. Less than a year later, this neighbor attacked and nearly murdered a nearby neighbor.

Is it possible he is the one responsible or Mikelle’s abduction or is it possible there is someone else who played a role in this and has eluded the authorities for more than twenty years?

Mikelle Biggs disapppeared on January 2, 1999. A tip in her disappearance was published on March 19, 2018.

A dollar bill in Wisconsin was the latest tip received that the Mesa detectives were investigating in Mikelle Biggs disappearance. The dollar bill was reported to the police on March 14, 2018 in Neenah, a town 9 miles southeast of Appleton.

There was a message written along the edges of the 2009 bill:

“My name is Mikel (sic) Biggs kidnapped From Mesa AZ I’m Alive.”

The note appeared to have been written in a child’s handwritting. Mikelle’s name was spelled wrong and “s” in “is” almost sits on its side while the “kel in the name is written in cursive. The Neenah Police Investigator Adam Streubel examined the bill and questioned the authenticity. He had noted that Mikelle’s first name was misspelled and suspected that it could have been just a senseless joke.

The detectives have said that they don’t dismiss any evidence that they find and that they follow up on any and all leads but that they don’t believe that this message was written by Mikelle. One of the lead detectives, Jerry Gissel, said evidence that that they found during their initial investigation showed that Mikelle was running away from somebody.

“It wasn’t somebody that she knew or wanted to be with. She dropped the bike, she was running toward home, she dropped quarters, and it was swift. And somebody grabbed her and, I believe, abducted her in a car and drove away with her,” Gisselll stated in an 2009 interview with ABC News.

Mikelle’s family believe her to be deceased and on the fifth anniversary of her disappearance they held a funeral for her with an empty casket. The family still believes that Dee Blalock, a convicted sex offender, who lived just two blocks away, and had spent the entire night in their garage, but are still suspicious of him, is responsible for her abduction. Blalock is currently serving a fifteen-and-a-half -year sentence in an Arizona prison for charges unrelated to Mikelle’s case.

A Trafficked Child’s Account

Voices of the Present and the Future would like to bring to attention the human trafficking industry on this last day of Mental Awareness Month.

There have been millions of women, men and children around the world who have been and who continue to be subjected to forced labor, domestic servitude, or the sex trade at the hands of these human traffickers. It’s a form of modern-day slavery, the inhumane practice of human trafficking that takes place here in the United States as well.

Human trafficking is one of the most heinous crimes investigated by ICE. In it’s worst manifestation, human trafficking is akin to modern-day slavery. They are forced into¬† prostitution, involuntary labor and other forms of servitude to repay debts-often incurred during entry into the United States.

One story from a child who was trafficked:

“I was 17 around when I met ‘Robert’. It started off with me and my friend meeting him for social purposes. It just went on for about nine months and we were living in different hotels the entire time and I don’t even remember how many men there were. I was a runaway and wasn’t living anywhere stable, so since I was underage most of the time, I sort of needed him in order to get hotels and move around.

I had already been a prostitute since I was 15 and I think I just didn’t even know what was right or wrong and how I should be treated. Towards the end, he held me against my will in a hostage situation and forced me to prostitute and took all the money and just beat me severely.

The last time I saw him, he was just beating me until he was absolutely tired. I was covered in bruises, my face was completely disfigured and it’s causing me issue with my back to this day because of the way he was beating me and torturing me. That was probably the worst. There was a client in the room and he was having issue with something I couldn’t do because I was all beat up. I didn’t want to do it anymore. I didn’t want to do anything. He wanted his money back. When Robert and him were talking I ran out of the room and somehow was able to run faster than him.

I didn’t tell anyone. I kept it to myself until I got a call from the FBI that he’d been arrested for something else and asked would I talk. Having to go face everything and realize how serious everything was. For the longest time I didn’t even think it was that serious.

At the trial, it felt empowering to look at him the entire time. I’m sure it drove him crazy. He can never touch me but he had to look at me and listen and it made me feel good.

I had to learn that if I don’t at least have some kind of love and value for myself, no one ever will. My advice to other girls would be to let people help you.”

Empower yourself and help empower other writers, leave comments, follow, subscribe or just hit the like button. If you have a similar story to share we would love to hear it. Let us know what you have to say here at Voices, past, present,and future.

An Unmarked Grave

Voices of the Present and Future has recently been reading about the 751 unmarked graves found at the site of a former residential school in Saskatchewan. If you haven’t been following the news, please continue reading this post as this discovery just comes weeks after the remains of 215 children were found at a similar residential school in British Columbia.

A statement was given by Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau. He said he was “terribly saddened” by the discovery in Saskatchewan. He also said it was “a shameful reminder of the systematic racism, descrimination, and injustice that indigenous peoples have faced.”

Between the years of 1863 and 1998, there were more than 150,000 indigenous children that were taken from their families and placed in these schools throughout Canada. Often, these children were not allowed to speak their language or to practice their culture. Many being abused and mistreated.

A former residential school student, Florence Sparvier, spoke at a press conference stating, ” They made us believe we didn’t have souls. They were putting us down as people, so we learned to not like who we were.”

A commission that was launched in 2008 to document the impacts of this system, found that large numbers of indigenous children never returned to their home communities. The practice amounted to cultural genocide. In 2008, the Canadian government formally apologized for the system, although this does not bring back the lives that were lost or to quote the words used, “the souls” that were lost.

Chief Delorme said there may have once been markers for the graves but the Roman Catholic Church, which oversaw the cemetary, may have removed them. It is not yet determined if all of these unmarked graves are those of children.

There was an estimated 6,000 children who died while attending these schools. The students were often housed in poorly built, poorly heated, and unsanitary facilities. There was also physical and sexual abuse at the hands of the school authorities which led other children to run away.

I urge you to take a moment of silence for the lives of those lost and prayers that identities will be provided for the unmarked graves that have been found.

Thank you for following Voices of the Present and Future today.

A Child Army

Voices, Past, Present, and Future would like to take you on a deep dive into the Most Wanted Fugitive list. While some are too evil and dumb or just plain greedy to get away with their crimes against humanity, others have managed to vanish and evade capture for years.

Let’s take a look at Joseph Kony for instance. Despite the short documenary done on him in 2012, he is still out there. Kony is a sadistic Ugandan Warlord who not only forced children into his guerrilla war against the Ugandan Government, he was also known for chopping off their limbs to maintain discipline.

Koni was born into a middle class family. Both parents farmers. He dropped out of school at a young age and formed the Lord’s Resistance Army in 1987. Koni declared a military offensive in Uganda that was aimed at overthrowing the Ugandan government to establish a theoretic state based on the dominion theology. Because of his terror activities, he was banished from Uganda and shifted his attention to South Sudan. Koni described himself as a freedom fighter, struggling for a Christian Uganda.

Koni, being one of Africa’s most notorious warlords, is currently one of the MOST wanted African militants.

For a man seeking and claiming to be a freedom fighter, I don’t know how he could explain the accusations against him as being Christian at all.

Koni has been accused of ordering the abduction of children to become child soldiers and sex slaves. Approximately 66,000 children became his soldiers, and 2 million people were displaced internally from 1996 to 2009 by his forces.

Koni was indicted in 2005 for war crimes and crimes against humanity, but managed to evade capture. In 2013, there were reports that he was no longer in good health. In April of 2017, he was still at large but his forces was reportedly down to approximately 100 soldiers, from the estimated high of 3,000. The hunt for Koni ended believing he was no longer a significant security risk to Uganda.

Dominic Ongwen had served as a key member of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) and was one of Koni’s senior aids in the organization. He had been kidnapped by Koni as a child and became a soldier in the LRA. He rose through the organization’s heirarchy. He finally surrendered himself in January 2015, which became a major blow to Koni’s group. A spokesperson for the Ugandan Army stated that, ” this puts the LRA in the mostvulnerable position” and that, “It is only Koni left standing”.

In February 2021, Ongwen was convicted by the International Criminal Court of 61 counts of crimes against humanity and war crimes.

For me, until reading about Koni, I didn’t know this was going on. I’m not one who stays glued to the news channel and knows eveything that is happening in other countries. But, hopefully, through this post and other posts in the future, it will shine a light on things that other people are having to go through children especially.

I watch my new grandbaby in her little swing, smiling in her sleep and it saddens me that other children around the world are forced to fight and endure such crimes against them.

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