Legal Defense Fund


I have known Melinda Drabek-Chritton for many years. I have known Chad Chritton since he began dating Melinda. I know them both well. Over the years I, and my wife, have spent a great deal of time with them. In 2011 alone I would estimate that I was at their home at least a dozen times, spending several hours with them on each occasion. I know their children, including SLC. I remember well Chad going to Texas and fighting to get custody of SLC, and rescuing her from an abusive situation, and then bringing her back to Wisconsin to live. From the start it was obvious to me that SLC likely had mental health problems. She was always odd, very strange. When she would look at you it was like she was looking through you. You would talk to her and she would not respond. Melinda would make meals and SLC would sit at the table and not eat, saying she was not hungry while the rest of us ate. From the time I fist met SLC, when she moved to Wisconsin, she was small, thin. Over time there were several occasions when I was present she would not eat, saying she is not hungry. Chad and Melinda have told me that she frequently did this. I was not surprised to hear that she had lost weight, but I know that the weight loss did not happen because Chad or Melinda starved her. It happened because she chose not to eat. She would urinate and defecate on her clothes and on the floor of her room, and that happened when she had an upstairs bedroom with the bathroom across the hall and when she had her bedroom in the basement and would have to come upstairs to use the bathroom. I, on several occasions, helped Chad and Melinda clean up the messes.


Over the years I heard Chad and Melinda many times ask her if she had to go to the bathroom, and encourage her to do so. It seemed like if you did not tell SLC to go to the bathroom, she would urinate and defecate on her clothes, the floor, and in containers she would keep downstairs. I would expect a person by 9 years of age not to do this, and that is how old she was when I met her, and she was still engaging in this behavior at 15. I remember when the State had Chad and Melinda install the security system, with the automatic lock on the door and the alarm system. It was then when SLC moved from the upstairs bedroom to the basement. The door lock was a one-way system, it did not lock to prevent SLC from coming upstairs to the rest of the house, it only locked the door to prevent someone going down to SLC’s bedroom area. Chad and Melinda could not afford the expense of installing this system, but it was the only way the State would let Joshua come home. The State wanted the system installed to protect SLC. Now it appears the State is saying Chad and Melinda locked SLC in the basement and that is just not true. It also appears that Dr. Barbara Knox is saying that this security system that was installed is a form of torture by Chad and Melinda of SLC. That is not true. The State required Chad and Melinda to put the security system in if they wanted Joshua to be able to come home, and they did. They both wanted their family together. There is so much more. Chad and Melinda are good people. They tried over the years to get professional help for SLC. They went through the humiliation of having Human Services come into their home on several occasions because of complaints made. Each time Human Services said the complaints were unfounded. But I know how hurt and humiliated they were over it. This all came about because of SLC, but they hung in, continuing to seek help for her, not giving up on her, and continuing to love her. And now they find themselves in jail, Chad lost his job over this, they are likely to lose their home, their children are taken from them, their house has been broken into 3 times and totally trashed while they have been in jail, Melinda’s health is deteriorating, and they are facing prison. All because Chad did the right thing and rescued his daughter from abuse with her mother in Texas. In hindsight, I cannot help but wonder if Chad and Melinda could do this all over again, they would not chose to leave SLC in Texas. I hope it occurs to others besides me that if Chad and Melinda are child abusers, and they have 4 children in total, why is it that it is only SLC that was abused?

                To contact us:

Phone: 1-866-504-7779

Fax: 608-365-9929


c/o Dr. William J. Hayes

1725 North Lodge Drive

Beloit, Wisconsin 53511