Monday, December 28, 2009

Threats to Willow Palin - Statement by Meg Stapleton

Meg Stapleton just issued the following statement to the Juneau Empire:
One of the events discussed in former Gov. Sarah Palin's book, "Going Rogue, " was a disturbing occurrence that affected the family: a vile threat made against Palin's daughter, Willow, while she was attending school in Juneau.

The threat was made in a MySpace post.

The family reported the threat to the governor's security detail and they investigated the matter, including interviewing the individual who made the threat at that person's home.

Though no charges were brought, the Palin family remained very concerned. The matter involved minors and was likely not subject to public review. A reporter for the Juneau Empire was directed to talk with the governor's security detail. It is not clear whether he did so. Contrary to the implication of the report, the threat was real, the threat was serious and the threat was responded to.

Meghan Stapleton
This statement was issued because of criticism that Sarah lied about the threats. After the following Juneau Empire story, several anti-Palin blogs started popping off that Palin made the whole thing up. From the Juneau Empire:
Former Gov. Sarah Palin, who has had a rocky relationship with the state's capital city, says in her book there were some ugly threats made against her daughters while they were attending Juneau schools.

Those threats reportedly caused daughter Willow Palin to be removed from the Juneau School District.....

The alleged threats made against Palin's daughters are raising questions among officials who would likely have been made aware of them at the time, had they been made or had Palin taken them seriously....

In "Going Rogue" Palin wrote:

"In that first year, I was alerted to threats against Willow by students at her Juneau school, one particularly disturbing. Someone posted a note on an Internet site threatening to gang-rape her at school. I never felt safe for her after that. Later, the same thing happened to Bristol."

Willow Palin attended Dzantik'i Heeni Middle School, while Bristol Palin attended Juneau-Douglas High School.

Palin provided no details about where the Internet site was, how seriously she took the threats, how she knew it was posted by students, or what steps she'd taken to ensure her family's safety.

Former Juneau School District Superintendent Peggy Cowan was superintendent during the period in question and said she never heard of such concerns.

"That was never reported to my office," she said. "I am completely confident that I never heard that....."

Juneau Police Chief Greg Browning similarly said his department has no record of ever being alerted to such threats.

The Alaska State Troopers provide a security detail for Palin, but trooper spokeswoman Megan Peters said the first they heard about the allegation was from Palin's book.

"AST has no record of a report like that being made to our agency," Peters said. "Additionally, we have no way of determining if a report of that nature was made to another agency."

Palin attorney Thomas Van Flein in Anchorage said he wasn't representing Palin during the period in question, but he had heard about a threat later from her husband, Todd Palin.

"I remember Todd told me he took Willow out of school because of it," Van Flein said....

Alaska Dispatch writer Craig Medred was among those questioning the allegation, but called making such threats against anyone's children "unconscionable."

"If it really happened, it should have resulted in a criminal investigation," Medred wrote.
Note: Could this be the same Craig Medred that the Bob and Mark Show called out for printing a completely misleading story on the Palins earlier this year?

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