WILLIAMSBURG, Va. (WAVY) — A 12-year-old Williamsburg boy is in acute psychiatric care after his mother said she caught him in the act molesting his 4-year-old sister.
“He was supposed to be in his room, and my daughter was playing, and I heard her giggle and realized that he was there and ran up,” Kim Williams told WAVY.com. “When I came in, he was exposing himself to her and trying to get her to touch him.”
Williams said she has strict rules that her 12-year-old is not to be alone with her other children.
“He shows no remorse. He’s placing the blame on his sister,” she said.
That night, Williams called the James City County Police Department, hoping for help. She said officers placed her son in an acute psychiatric facility in Hampton.
“He was molesting his sister. This isn’t the first instance. It’s the first instance with my child, but not with other children, and he’s freely admitted that,” Williams said.
The mother has kept well documented records of her son’s physical and sexual outbursts, as well as records of his care.
“Since he was four, he’s been in the care of therapists and psychiatrists,” she said. “He’s been on a gauntlet of medications. He’s been in intensive behavioral therapies. He has been hospitalized before.”
Williams’ son has been suspended from school several times for attacking classmates, groping other children, threatening to stab or kill, and peering under bathroom stalls. So far, she said no doctor has been able to come up with a concrete diagnosis or an effective treatment plan.
“It feels like he just falls through the cracks,” she said. “When he has these outbursts, I’m told to call crisis counseling, to take him to the hospital, to have him evaluated. He has the ability to calm himself and become very charming and very ‘I’m sorry,’ and they say ‘he’s calm, take him home. We’ll see him at his next appointment.'”
But this time, Williams said she’s afraid to take her own son back home.
“We see children committing heinous crimes — it’s not unheard of anymore. I think it’s time somebody starts stepping in before it happens instead of crying out after it happens,” Williams said. “I don’t want it to be my child that does that. I don’t want it to be my children that are the victims of it. I just want help.”
Williams asked doctors to keep her son in the hospital, but the facility does not offer long-term care. She said the doctors don’t dispute he may need to go to a different facility, but they told her that’s out of their hands.
“Even if they would give the recommendations,” She said. “The process is so long, what am I supposed to do in the meantime? They recognize that he shows little remorse for what he’s done. They recognize that this is a long history of these behaviors, but it’s kind of a ‘we feel bad for you. There’s nothing we can do.”
Williams said doctors told her if she does not pick up her son when he is discharged, they would have to call police, who could charge her with child abandonment — something she’s afraid may be her only option.
“For everyone’s safety, and to try to force someone’s hand into getting the help he needs, I am willing to face charges,” Williams said.
On Wednesday, Williams met with representatives from Child Protective Services. She told WAVY.com they offered to impose a one-week respite and take her son into their custody.
CPS and James City County police are investigating her son’s actions involving his sister. After their investigation is complete, CPS may recommend a long-term plan for Williams’ son. Williams said that could include hospitalization or placement in a program for juveniles outside the home.
CPS allots 45 to 60 days for their investigations, but police would not say how long their investigation might take. Williams still has fears about how to care for her son while she waits for those answers.
“I love all of my children. I love my son because he’s my son, but I am fully aware of what he’s capable of,” Williams said. “I know how dangerous he can be. That’s really difficult to admit as a mom, but these other two, they’re little, and they’re innocent and they’re at risk. And so as much as I want him to get the help he needs, I have to think of their safety and the safety of the children in the neighborhood and the safety of the children at school. I feel like my back is up against a wall at this point. If he goes above and beyond and hurts someone, it’s my fault for not doing everything I could to stop it.”
WAVY.com will continue to reach out to the Williams family, CPS, and James City County police. As this story continues to develop, check WAVY.com for updates.