Saturday, January 9, 2010

Day Twenty-Seven

Yesterday was a tough day for Raye Dawn and her family. From the moment the family members who haven't seen Raye Dawn since she went to jail saw her in the courtroom, tears began to fall as they fought their need to hug her and tell her how much they love her. It was heartbreaking to watch. The raw emotions that were displayed in the courtroom from both sides were evident in the number of security personnel who remained throughout the entire day.

I was deeply touched by the testimony of Royce Briggs and Shirica. Their love for Lance and Kelsey shined through their tear-filled words. I felt their pain and understood the depth of their loss.

When Raye Dawn spoke, there wasn't a dry eye in any of the twenty-two supporters who were there for her. Snickers from Britten Follet and smiles from the Briggs didn't go unnoticed as Raye cried in anguish over the loss of Kelsey. (The Briggs had a few of their family members there and one friend, Lori-there were seven for their side. Of course Starla and Jullie lied about going.)

Raye's words were powerful and truthful, and I thought to myself that there was no way that the Briggs could walk away from that courtroom with hate in their hearts for Raye Dawn. But from Lance's interview afterward, I was wrong. He worked throughout the day to intimidate Raye Dawn as he positioned himself to stare her down during the entire proceeding. While she was on the stand, pouring out her heart and her love for her child, he stared at her and gave her such looks of hate that the marshal had to put him in his place more than once. I understand his anger. But it's misplaced. Where was the anger toward Mike Porter?

Even Lance's attorney showed more respect for the man who murdered Lance's child instead of Kelsey's mother as he defended Mike Porter during his deposition. Porter plead the fifth to every question as Lance's attorney objected to the questions. Lance's attorney tired of defending the man who murdered Kelsey and left before the deposition ended, shaking Porter's hand on the way out the door. When asked if Lance's attorney shook Raye Dawn's hand, she stated he had not.

I have a lot more to say about the hearing and will post everyone's testimony after I have more time to reflect. Over the past two days I've gotten to know Holly and Tracy from Tennessee. They drove here to support Raye Dawn and to get to know her family. They are wonderful, loving women and I'm thankful to them and to all of Raye's supporters who have traveled from around the globe to come here to get to know myself and the Smiths. Without the support of all of you, we would not be able to carry on against all of the hate. From the bottom of my heart, thank all of you.

Day Twenty-Seven: Spending the day catching up on school and work but will work in some e-mails to certain Web sites.


  1. "Snickers from Britten Follet and smiles from the Briggs didn't go unnoticed as Raye cried in anguish over the loss of Kelsey."

    I hope your right and hope the judge isn't intimidated by Follet. I guess if your planning to make a buck on a book you would try to make the testimony look ridiculous.

  2. One last shot at this comment, and I will not post it anymore. Jody, how do you know if Starla or Jullie were there if you have no idea what they look like?

  3. Follet didn't show up until after 11:30 - an hour and a half into the hearing. She sat at the back of the Smith side, but smiles were seen exchanged between her and the Briggs. She didn't approach, look at, or talk to any of the Smiths. When she snickered while Raye was talking, one of Raye's cousins turned to look at her and she looked up in the air like "it wasn't me."

    The courtroom was small. We knew everyone on Raye's side. The only women on Lance's side were Debbie Hammons who sat next to Kathie Briggs, Shirica, Jeanna, and Lori. At the end of the day, one or two young women sat at the back of the Briggs side. I barely noticed them because they weren't there long. That was it.

  4. Show me proof where I said I was there???? You won't find any because I haven't said that... I said I was going but no where did you see anything posted stating that I was there... Starla was not there and she has said as much... She had something come up... something more important than RD whining and crying.... That comment about RD is my opinion... As for if I was there or not is irrelevant... I said I was going to be there, but have not stated anywhere whether I was there or not...

    That being said, How can you call me a liar??? If I had posted I was there and really wasnt then that would be a lie... If I had posted I wasn't there and really was then that too would be a lie.. But I have not stated anywhere that I was or wasn't there... Only that I was going to go...

    I have not said anything to you in the last few days negative or not and you come at me with this??? It only shows how cruel your actions are even when unprovoked...

  5. Thank you for pointing out the obvious Mary... She has no idea what I look like or anything about me... Again I am being accused of something I didn't so... She cant say I lied about anything because I have not stated IF I was there or not... I have only stated I was going to go... Big difference... Someone can have all of the intentions of doing something and saying so... doesn't mean they did it...

  6. Another example of the twisted logic of this cyber gangster member. Still obsessed with you and your opinions.

  7. I am also disappointed that people do not fully understand why Raye has chosen to fight Lance for this DHS award. Again, people seem to forget that he is not father of the year. He lost his daughter but she was never his priority while alive. His actions against DHS appear like a money grab. Raye even-ing out this playing field by calling him on this makes perfect sense to me. At least her portion will help pay for the injustice of her wrongful conviction and help other children in need. Will Lance donate his portion? I have sincere doubts. Kelsey is not being treasured or revered TODAY in the light she deserves. And because he is free, he is responsible for this. He needs to find God and forgiveness for himself. He carries responsibility for Kelsey’s death on his shoulders as well. He once loved Raye and the guilt he must feel probably eats at him slowly. The stories one tells that are untrue are often harder to live with inside. And Lance seems to continue this life full of rage and denial. It’s obvious by his actions that he doesn’t care much for women. Did Kathie teach or model this when he was a child? If she left her children, he probably feels all women are abusive and abandon their responsibilities, so his rage at Raye may be really about his lack of having a loving mother. He could even be jealous that Kelsey received the love he did not.

    I am pleased to hear that Raye felt fully supported by those who attended. I did see Sherri on the news last night (internet viewing) and she sounded emotional, but was incredibly articulate. This family shows integrity through adversity. They also show compassion for the opposing side which is a true measure of kindness considering what has been said about them. They understand that the loss is felt by both the Smith and Brigg’s families. No one is excluded from this which I notice you have expressed in this blog in such a lovely way (i.e. - Royce Briggs and Shirica).

    Kelsey was light and life. All children come to this world with innocence, radiance and filled with beauty. Perfect creations. She is one of thousands of children who die at the hands of predators and evil in our society. Why does God allow this to happen? Even predators were once beautiful children themselves. Unfortunately, there will always be evil.

    I continue to pray that Kathie Briggs separates herself from the insanity of this vindictiveness and finds forgiveness and peace. She needs to step out of her box and respect the loss the Smith family have experienced and that she bears some responsibility for this loss as well. Until then, it will be easier for her to plant her anger and guilt onto others. It is easier to do this than look in the mirror, as my own experiences have taught me. However, it is definitely the right thing to do.

    In the end, Thy will be done.

  8. Because of the distance that separates me from this case, it can be difficult to get up to date information that isn’t pumped out from the television media. To be honest, I don’t like television. It is cut and pasted, much like a document, to fit into a tiny box and never speaks the full truth of what has happened so I appreciate this synopsis Jody.

    I can’t imagine what it must feel like to want to hold someone you love so badly. I think part of the inhumanity of our criminal justice system is that we ban touch. We remove the need of human beings to feel cared for no matter how badly their crimes are. It is true dehumanizing. And then we wonder why many reoffend and return to society without care or feeling for other human beings. We need to work harder on rehabilitating this people so the recidivism rates decline. I am tired of my tax paying money going to failures repeated. Where did our basic Christian or rather, human values go? I hate to say it but we are the only country that seems to think it is all right not to take care of our sick. So if we lack that kind of compassion, how do we find it for a mother who grieves over the loss of her child at the hands of her husband? I imagine Raye asks herself daily why she didn’t know. Or how she could have changed this outcome. Youth and inexperience play a big role here. And of course, hindsight is always 20/20.

    From reading your blog, Jody am I right to assume Porter was there? That simply disgusts me. This man has caused both of these families endless pain by murdering Kelsey. Taking the fifth is just another act of a coward. If he were truly a man, he would stay up, admit that he raped and murdered this child, speak true remorse, repent and accept the penalty he deserves. It is in this fully disclosure and accountability that he will find forgiveness and redemption. Obviously, he has not found God. Of course, we all know that God has His eye on him. I think if he had been honest from the beginning, none of this would be happening. He is a coward. And Kathie Briggs has to carry guilt for her dealings with this devil. The death of Kelsey seems never about him – when it really is ALL ABOUT HIM. HE IS A MURDERER AND CHILD PREDATOR AND RAPIST – UNPUNISHED.

  9. Anonymous, Exactly! She was going to be there with Starla to expose me in the media. I was there, holding my head high with nothing to hide, except a pounding headache, but they weren't there.

  10. Jody...thank you for posting this. I am saddened that this family has to re~hash and bring up so much pain again. It is a shame that so few can see the pain of the WHOLE family. And for anyone to shake the hand of Mike Porter disgusts me.

    I am also disappointed that people snickered through Raye talking. That is just wrong. Both sides lost Kelsey and some sort of respect needs to be shown.

    I feel for both sides of this family. It is a shame that they are all going through this. I pray for the day that the truth comes to light.

    Again Jody,thank you for sharing this with us. You are a good friend to Raye and her family and I am sure that they appreciate you. Please keep us posted on whats going on.

    Stay in the light :)

  11. Im waiting for you to show me where I said I was there Jody... I didn't... and Also show me where I said I was going to there to expose you to the media... You can't because I didn't... You are the one inviting the media for your story... You need to stop lying about me or post proof where I said these things... If you post it and it is real, I will apologize but I know you wont because there is nothing to post..

  12. Wendy, Thank you for your eloquently written comments. To clarify, Mike Porter was not there. He was depositioned beforehand by Raye's attorney and Lance's attorney objected to some of the questions asked of him and he plead the fifth throughout the questioning. He is a coward and a liar and a manipulator. With the Briggs support behind him, he will never confess to his crimes. It's a shame for Kelsey for she will never have justice.

  13. Ginger, You're welcome and I also pray for the truth to finally be told, but I'm afraid that the stubbornness of the Briggs will forever silence that truth. I know they are hurting. Yesterday I witnessed their pain. They want so badly to punish Raye for Mike Porter's crime. It's like a wife who finds out her husband is cheating and she wants to get revenge against the mistress instead of her husband, except that a beautiful child has lost her life and her murderer is being protected and any opinions against him are silenced. It is sickening.

  14. Jody... Its one thing if you want to make things up... but most of what you have posted you "claim" you can back up... Some of which you have... You claim someone said something and I have found the proof that yes, someone did say or do something... granted I have only been able to prove a couple of things.. But why are you going to bold face lie about my intentions with no proof and not even apologize... When I am wrong about something I apologize, regardless of who it is too... I have even tried to apologize to you.. Thank you for proving why I have issue with you... You proved it in this blog all by yourself... thank you

  15. Jullie, You made that comment somewhere on this blog and when I have time, I'll look for it. You stated you were going to come here and expose me in the media. If that's not what you meant, I apologize for calling you a liar. Forgive me if I'm not elated about the fact that you come on here and make semi nice comments and then go to your own blog and to Topix and trash me. I can't personally speak with you because of that reason. I have to protect myself. I'm sure you understand.

  16. I appreciate you addressing this now.

    I do understand but I havent been on topix in a very long time... except for today when I asked anyone to pull up where I said these things.. I never said I was there... and do you really think I would hurt the smiths or the briggs by causing a media circus just to prove a point... I am not that way Jody...

    As for my blog, I go and vent my feelings on there instead of on topix or your blog. My first post yes, it was full of anger and maliciousness... You are not exactly innocent in this feud between us. I have offered more than once to settle this with you and then you go and call me a liar? Saying that I am doing things when Im not... even after it is proven... I cant speak for the others and their issue with you.. but Starla nor myself would have ever caused a media circus. Thats not what the hearing was about. If you bring the media in, thats a different story. If they come to me and ask questions I will answer honestly and with tangible proof in hand to back up my side. But if or until that happens, I am not going to ruin someone simply to prove a point.

    Have a nice night.