My previous post seems to have resulted in a significant increase in the harassment directed at us, so I believe now might be the right time to continue my discussion of community-wide participation in crime and domestic abuse.
This time of year, the Texas Hill Country is a beautiful place to be, with the scenic hills covered in wildflowers, the temperatures moderate, and the weather generally dry. The local chambers of commerce market the area as a cheap and fun vacation destination that's a day's drive or less from most major Texas cities. The large bed and breakfast industry promotes intimate, personal experiences in hospitality. Life here seems wonderful, so perhaps after visiting, you decide to move here. The "welcome lady" calls on you with a basket of freebies and interviews you for her column in the local newspaper entitled "Newcomers".
Then, if you are a more worldly person than I am (in retrospect, I'd led a very sheltered life), you begin to notice the drug dealers on every street corner downtown and in the parking lots after school. You see free beer being generously dispensed to tourists waiting in lines (and the results when they try to drive off!) and the handbills advertising parties with live music being held in unusual places that are placed under windshields and into people's hands. You start realizing that some of those "little old German ranchers" in their pickup trucks are speaking German slang into sophisticated cell phones and radios. You discover that many of your neighbors take lots of long driving trips of various kinds. You notice heavy security in unusual places around town. You realize there are a lot of small airstrips, warehouses, greenhouses, and semi-truck facilities on the ranches of way too many people who explain their wealth to you by claiming to have "won the lottery".
At this point, you probably start asking questions. You find out about the local ties to former presidents, high-level national politicians and judicial figures, prominent celebrities and musicians, and military leaders in sensitive positions. You learn about the Austin music producer who seems to own half of the county, never goes anywhere without bodyguards, and whose wife was murdered. You hear about local ties to major media corporations. You are told about (and see for yourself) the small plane that files in from Dallas around the same time every evening. You realize that the questions the "welcome lady" asked you were designed to find out details about who you are and what you're doing here. Local ties to the military, the government, and the security industry begin to take on whole new meanings. You start seeing public employees acting suspiciously, and you begin having run-ins with public officials who are acting improperly. You also realize there are too many suspicious deaths locally and that news in general isn't being fully or accurately reported here.
By this point, local "insiders" have usually determined that you've figured out way too much and are no longer welcome here. Your name comes up at one of the many secretive meetings held around town under the guise of other things (church, school, hospital, bank, utilities, conservation, organizations, etc.). The word is put out (undoubtedly also through the Internet) that you're now targeted for harassment, stalking, and illegal surveillance. (The latter two of these, which each facilitate the other, are considered necessary because of concerns about what you now know and who you are telling about it.)
You will now find that most of your personal (i.e., non-junk) mail and packages will arrive open, late, and/or with visible signs of tampering. (We often see unauthorized persons coming and going from employees-only areas at the local post offices.) Your phone lines will be filled with static. You will receive prank phone calls and faxes at all hours. Parades of 50-100 or more vehicles will drive by your house repeatedly. Stuff will be thrown in your yard, some of it bizarre. (Someone once wadded up their children's baptismal certificates from the local
Catholic church into balls and tossed them onto our front porch early on a Sunday morning.) You will be followed everywhere you go, have your private conversations repeated back to you in public, be aggressively tailgated by persons who pull in behind you and turn on their headlights, and be slandered and libeled outrageously. Local businesses and merchants will all suddenly start cheating you outrageously.
Because I led a very sheltered life growing up and was prevented from learning about my husband's various indiscretions by the fact that entire communities, his entire family, and my own entire family were all covering up for him, I did not realize what was going on until after my husband suddenly left me for another woman in 1999, I began to find suspicious items in my husband's things, and my children and I began to be the victims of the severe harassment, stalking, and illegal surveillance touched on above. When some of these incidents involved threatening situations, got overtly physical, or involved what appeared to be drug trafficking and it became clear the local police were involved, I wasted no time in going to federal law enforcement, the press, and other outsiders. This only increased the illegal and paranoid behaviours directed at us, but it also probably saved our lives, since the people behind all this could not afford the close personal or financial scrutiny of their affairs that would have resulted if anything had happened to us after I'd made so many complaints and requests for help.
Now I've finally made it to the innermost layer of life here, my own. The harassment here over the last few days is pretty typical as to types of incidents, but they're generally spread out over longer periods of time. Last Thursday morning (our one weekday morning to sleep a little later), one of my adult children and I were jolted awake around 9 AM by a prank phone call; later, I was followed while running errands, and a woman with green fingernails tried to cheat me at a local business, laughed about doing it, and got mad when I politely insisted she fix the problem. When I went out several times, my ex- and/or his wife turned up nearby on bicycles or in various vehicles; they clearly knew I was coming and were waiting for me. Saturday morning the kids and I were suddenly awakened at 8:30 AM by our dog barking and growling at a tall man in a dark jogging suit who was standing in front of our house; as soon as I reached the window to try and see who it was, he turned and jobbed off (heading east) so I couldn't see his face. Then when I drove off 30 minutes later to run an errand I'd only just decided to run, someone posted a bright red sign reading "Garage Sale" with an arrow pointing towards our house on the hospital's property next door just long enough to make certain I'd seen it before taking it down and speeding off. A heavy-set German local I recognized then tailgated me on a motorcycle. Our house was buzzed by a low-flying plane, and another flew overhead circles above me when I walked later.
Yesterday afternoon, two young women pulled in behind me at a stop light and made exaggerated hand movements simulating hair-brushing and makeup application, then sped off when the light changed. (This was done to let me know they'd had access to illegal surveillance of me in my bathroom getting ready to leave a few minutes earlier.) On the way home, my youngest offspring and I were passed by a group of at least 50 motorcycles and a parade of approximately 30 vehicles on a normally deserted country road.
This morning I was awakened around 7 AM by approximately 5-8 people just east of our house and 2-4 people along the street in front of our house who were all loudly yelling out owl-hooting noises. Later, we picked up and removed the objects shown below that had been thrown into our front yard (probably by city workers). We also picked up and removed 5 golf balls that had been laid out in a trail in our pasture in locations they could not possibly have been hit into that were left by a trespasser/s who wanted us to know they'd been there.
Just move away, you say, which is clearly what the people doing all this to us want. Unfortunately, however, moving won't solve any of our problems and may actually make some of them worse. For example, because of the fraudulent trust document Ed Hodges manipulated and forged my initials on that the county clerk's office filed despite its not being properly notarized, I currently do not have clear title to my house and land (my only significant assets) according to county documents, and there are serious legal and financial consequences if I abandon the property and leave as many of the DV organizations are advising. Further, I've been told by many different people over the years that my ex-husband openly brags about continuing to stalk, harass, and share illegal surveillance of me wherever I go, and knowing what I do about his national, international, and high-level government, military, and law enforcement contacts plus the fact that the kids and I have previously experienced stalking and harassment on trips lead me to believe he absolutely does have the capabilities and the mindset to do this. Meanwhile, we continue to be forced to keep our house attended at all times in order to try and prevent the constant break-ins that in the past have resulted in stolen documents and other items, vandalism (all of the pulls were once removed from the dresser in my bedroom and one of them was broken, for example), and the leaving of threatening notes and bizarre items in strange places, which means my kids and I can't do anything away from home together as a family and not all of us will be able to attend my youngest's upcoming high school graduation ceremony.
The few people and organizations who've actually looked into helping us have had some pretty terrible experiences: threats, computer hacking, and much more. I'm followed everywhere by local law enforcement, both to see who I'm talking to and meeting with and also so they can run the license numbers of anyone else monitoring us, stop them, and confiscate any recording or photographic equipment they find. It doesn't take many incidents like these before potential rescuers with the noblest of intentions are forced to give up.
Meanwhile, my financial situation and that of my children who are still dependant on me is becoming quite desperate, as my ex-husband is well aware (and doesn't hesitate to show by some of his comments here). My alimony ends in February of 2011, and I've been told my ex- vows he'll order harassment of anyone who hires me. One of my adult children who lives with me since breaking off all ties with their dad in 2005 when he "got scary" while trying to force them to sign a trust document like the one posted here earlier, has already had numerous job applications stolen out of the mail over the years, had job applications interfered with, etc. When law enforcement at all levels and the entire legal and justice system refuse to protect you, what in the world are you supposed to do? (Blog about it to make people aware we are a lot closer to a national situation like Mexico's than you think and that the pretty icing on top isn't going to be able to cover up the layers of the cake for much longer.)
From the top to the bottom and the inside to the outside, the flavor of the layer cake that is life here is "Control". I'm still not sure about who's actually running the bakery.