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Why I Feel Horrified for Kyron Horman's Stepmom

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Attorney Robin Sax: Kyron Horman, age 7, is as adorable as can be. And he has completely disappeared with no leads after a school science fair. Kyron was last seen at Skyline Elementary School in Portland, Ore., last Friday, June 4, 2010. He had done a project on the red-eyed tree frog. Kyron seemed happy that morning at school.

Terri Moulton Horman

Sheriff's deputies, FBI patrols and the National Guard have all been searching for Kyron for eight days now. In addition to its Behavioral Analysis Unit, the FBI has dispatched its Child Abduction Rapid Deployment Team -- although that doesn't necessarily mean the authorities have determined that an abduction has taken place. Classmates and teachers have been questioned, as well as Kyron's stepmom, Terri Moulton Horman.

As a stepmother myself, I feel horrified that his stepmom (who apparently was the last person to be with him) has been softly implicated in some media reports. I can only imagine her heartbreak and heartache at his disappearance. It also must be hard for her to be questioned. But despite my sympathy, I can't help but wonder why the family didn't come out and address the public sooner. Why didn't they immediately reach out (beg, gravel, cajole) for help finding their son? A Facebook friend of mine from college reached out to me last weekend; shouldn't we expect the parents of this missing kid to do the same?

Until their first public appearance Friday afternoon, all four of Kyron's parents (two biological, two step) had been noticeably absent from the media. That might have been because they were in shock. I have dealt with hundreds of abduction cases, and I can tell you that the range of the parents' responses are as diverse as their kids -- and the crimes themselves. So my words shouldn't be taken to mean that I think Kyron's stepmom (or any of his other parents/guardians) are guilty in any way. In this media-crazed day and age, though, parents of missing kids must connect with intelligent, media-savvy professionals who can give them guidance and help them use the media to their best advantage in the search for their missing child.

Kyron was last seen wearing a black "CSI" shirt and dark cargo pants. If you have any information on Kyron's disappearance, please call the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office tip line at 503-261-2847.

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51 comments so far | Post a comment now
tennmom June 14, 2010, 10:09 AM

My daughters have a step-father. My late husband died when they were 3 and 5. My Now Husband stepped in and has been a wonderful father for them.
My late-husband’s step-mother raised 5 children she didn’t give birth to. The mother was deceased, the father was a raging alcoholic.
So, i personally know 8 children with wonderful “steps”. It takes a special person to step in and care for children.

Allison June 15, 2010, 9:32 AM

You mean “grovel”, not “gravel”. Moron.

Joan Gomes June 15, 2010, 2:23 PM

Really awesome read! Honestly..

Mathew Mott June 15, 2010, 3:13 PM

Wow I’m really the only comment to your great writing!?

Jane June 16, 2010, 8:10 AM

Allison it is a discussion board not a spelling bee. Don’t attack people maybe the wrong key was hit don’t be such a ——h.

Kt mom June 17, 2010, 4:57 AM

I agree will all of th facebook comments and workout comments. Toooo coincidental… Ironic you post those so quickly. Why aren’t any other people in any of the pics ( background or anywhere else) at a science fair? This is in Portland! We are in southern Oregon in a school of less than 100, and our science fair had kids in all of our fair pics. Fishy. Doesn’t the school call when kids do not show for school? ESP when they were participants in the fair? That’s protocol in our school. I don’t, obviously, have every detail of this case but too much is missing step mom:(

Cora June 17, 2010, 5:16 AM

That Terri is Kyron’s stepmother, not his bio-mother, is not what makes me suspect her. If we assume it’s a fact that Kyron was on the school premises for at least a few minutes the morning he disappeared, then he was either grabbed by a stranger or led away by someone he knows or someone who SEEMED trustworthy. Anyone nutty enough to think he could grab a child from a busy school and not be noticed is NOT someone who would blend in at a school, so we can rule out the homeless/vagrant type of person. (In addition, Kyron would have made much noise if a manifest wacko grabbed him.) As for the seems-like-a-normal-person pedophile: someone who would look normal enough not to call attention to himself at a school would be too rational to choose the school as the site from which to grab a child. That leaves Kyron’s going with someone he knew. Someone outside the immediate family who knew Kyron would be afraid of being reciognized by people besides Kyron at the school. So…that leaves Kyron’s leaving the school with someone whom people at the school would expect to be with Kyron. That narrows it down to the parents and the steparents. The father, stepmother, and stepfather surely have been proven to have solid alibis by now, plus no one at the school seems to have seen any of those three. Whom does that leave? The stepmother. Terri was at the school; it was normal for her to be at the school; and Kyron would have left with her without objection. Some posters may scream at me for asserting this, but I believe the cops know the stepmother killed the boy and disposed of his body and they will arrest her as soon as they find the body. If they can’t locate the body within, say, two more weeks, they’ll name Terri AND the biofather as suspects as a way to get the biofather to crack and tell anything he knows or suspects about terri. (perhaps the biofather was involved only after the killing or had no involvement but suspects his wife and would turn on her if the cops named her as a suspect.)

Kasey June 17, 2010, 7:57 AM

Hi Cora - Although I agree with you regarding the parents, I disagree with you regarding pedophile. Many, many pedophiles blend in all too easily and they do this on purpose. It’s a thrill for them and it’s exactly what floats their boat. I can see a scenario where a pedophile would think, I’ll just stop in here and see what happens. They look for an opportunity and Kyron may have been in the wrong place at the wrong time. Pedophiles usually DO NOT look like bad guys and they know how to lure a child. They don’t always take them kicking and screaming.

With all that being said, I do agree regarding the parents. The step-mom’s body language does not sit well with me. When I saw her in the press conference I immediately thought of Susan Smith. Gave me the creeps.

WMM June 17, 2010, 10:00 AM

It’s my opinion that Terri had something to do with Kyron’s disappearance. Her behavior is “off.” The way she appeared at the press conference when the two fathers were speaking reminded me of Susan Smith. Fake. Fake. Fake. Looking over the audience to see if they were buying it. No sale.

Friend of Terri June 17, 2010, 2:24 PM

I personally know Terri and she is a good mom. The birgh mom abandoned Kyron when he was an infant and Terri raised Kyron since he was born. They were instructed by an organization that was counciling parents of missing children to eat healthy, excercise and try to get rest. Kaine and Terri met at the gym and Terri was in a body building competition a few years back, it is what they do…so why would it be so odd to try to excercise. They find it helps them at least get out of the house once a day and relieve stress. Also, as for the media some of the womeon on this forum said it spot on. They stayed out of the media for the first week to keep the focus on Kyron. As soon as they went on TV the focus has been on the parents, especially the step mom, judging how she looks, speculating on how she feels. Really people, you don’t know. If she is guilty the police will figure that out, they are smart. In the meantime give this poor mother the benefit of the doubt, put yourself in her place and imagine what it would feel like to be accused. Thanks for all of you that posted similar sentiments!

WMM June 17, 2010, 8:45 PM

To Friend of Terri - If you really are her friend, you might want to help her stay off the internet because she’s making herself look guilty. Posting about pizza, clean sheets, movies she’s watching, hitting the gym, “poking” people on FaceBook, etc. while her step-son is missing makes her look VERY insensitive and disconnected to say the least. Hitting the gym and running like Lindsay Lohan from a reporter who was offering help also makes her look pretty bad. Posting on the comment section of OregonLive defending herself for posting makes her look ridiculous and completely self-absorbed. Not changing her FB photo to Kyron’s photo for nearly a week after he went missing; but keeping her daughter’s photo up makes her appear disinterested. Her FB page has been filled with info on her and her daughter for months with barely a mention of Kyron. His pics were few and far between and none of them had the cute little captions her daughter’s pics had. Her profile on MyLife shows her with her husband and daughter….no Kyron. If she, (or you) want us to believe she’s this caring mom maybe she should at least act like it in public.

WMM June 17, 2010, 8:50 PM

And Friend of Terri, you said his birthmom “abandoned” Kyron at birth. Hard to believe when it’s been reported that she has regular visitation with him.

Furthermore, you seem like a hypocrite taking a slam at the birthmom and then asking everyone to show Terri consideration during a difficult time.

From your post:
“In the meantime give this poor mother the benefit of the doubt, put yourself in her place and imagine what it would feel like to be accused.”

Take your own advice.

karen June 18, 2010, 6:04 AM

Yes I believe the stepmom is suspect. She looks crazy actually the whole group does. No one can place she or the child at the school that morning. The police know more than they are letting on parents were worried to send their kids to school. There was no abduction here. It was within the family.

Anon June 18, 2010, 11:35 AM

Its looking more and more like she will be implicated in the disappearance.

Papa June 19, 2010, 12:05 AM

For having been involved with so many cases as you have, it surprises me that the methods have escaped your scrutiny, especially those where the police and FBI advise the families to stay out of the media initially. Information leaked can kill an active investigation and families in grief and shock don’t know how to react or address the media properly - unless they have a publicist.

I think involving yourself in the predictable villifying of the police or the family is not becoming of your social position and you should stop.

Truth Will Come Out June 19, 2010, 12:02 PM

Wow. Above we have “Terri’s friend” asking everyone to give Terri a break while slamming the bio mom as someone who has “abandoned” Kyron. Now we know from this article That “Terri’s friend” is a liar. Seems that Desiree had kidney failure when Kyron was a baby and had to go to Canada for treatment. Terri and her “friend” are “interesting” to say the least.

Truth Will Come Out June 19, 2010, 12:16 PM

From the article:

“That same year, she (Terri) was snagged on Interstate 5 in Marion County for drunken driving. James, who was 11, was in the car. With a blood-alcohol level of 0.15 percent, she was charged with DUII and reckless child endangerment. Terri pleaded guilty and took a diversion course.”

Driving drunk with her kid in the car. Moves in with Kaine to help care for Kyron while Desiree goes through medical procedures for her kidneys and winds up hooking up with Kaine.

Wow. Just wow.

Kasey June 21, 2010, 2:52 PM

Regarding the above, I guess there is ALOT of info the family does not want the public to know. I’m interested in why her older son was moved out months prior to Kyron disappearing. Obviously, the dynamics within the family is not as rosey as they’d like the public to believe.

pharmacy tech June 27, 2010, 11:52 PM

Keep posting stuff like this i really like it

TerriFan June 28, 2010, 2:24 AM

You people are all low life busy-bodies.
If you had a shred of common sense, you’d know that they are avoiding the media because police instructed them to do so.

Exactly WHAT keeps you following this story? It certainly isn’t Kyron! Ya’ll are more interested in picking the family apart and talking smack on the family. So what if her son lives with the dad… so what if she got a DUI! None of it’s related or relevant - and none of that makes Terri a suspect!
Get a life

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