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A Legacy of Pain - The rebellion
Written by Editor   
Monday, 28 September 2009 11:32
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A Legacy of Pain
She deserved better
The fight for custody
Finally home
The rebellion
Whitnei's murder
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The rebellion

Brittney Jones, Mike Dubois' daughter, was only seven years old when the adoption occurred, so although Whitnei and Taylor were technically aunts to Brittney, all three girls were raised as sisters.

Despite being three years younger than Whitnei, Brittney said the two were at the same maturity level.

"Whitnei developed a lot slower than other girls," Brittney said. "She was always timid around guys. In high school, she had every personality change, from purple hair to black hair to a preppy phase to grunge. She was trying to find her identity."

At the age of 16, Whitnei's rebellion against "Maw-Maw and Paw-Paw Dubois" officially began.

"They were strict on us, and they always kept a close eye on what we were doing," said Brittney. "Whitnei didn't like it. She was very outspoken, and she knew how to make them eat out of her hand. She was their baby. All of us always gave Whitnei everything she wanted."

At the age of 17, Whitnei decided to run away from home after an argument with her paw-paw. She stayed with friends, who introduced her to her very first pain pill. The pill made Whitnei feel "normal" rather than scared, alone and confused. The drugs dulled the nightmares of her childhood. Long story short, the pills made her happy.

She returned home a few weeks later, but she didn't return home the same.

Whitnei soon convinced her parents to let her drop out of school at the age of 17 – still a sophomore.

"They gave in and let her," Brittney said. "After that, her circle of friends changed. When she turned 18, she moved out and got a job at a fast food restaurant. At that point, her drug use was still just recreational."

But a year or so later, Whitnei met a boyfriend who could support her new-found habit. The couple eventually moved in together, and several years later, were eventually arrested together after police raided their home for illegal narcotics.

"While Whitnei was in jail, she found out she was pregnant and they released her," Brittney said.

Thrilled about becoming a mother, Whitnei promised to be the mother she never had. She said she would stop using. In fact, she moved back in with the Dubois family and prepared for what was destined to become the happiest moment of her life – the birth of her daughter.

Due to a rough labor, however, Whitnei underwent a C-section, and later developed a staph infection.

"That's when the doctors put her on some really serious pain pills," Brittney noted, "pills much stronger than anything she had ever taken. These were pills you can't get refills for. And Whitnei was loving it."

The descent

Whitnei promised she would never do drugs in the home because she didn't want to subject her little girl to that – and she didn't. But she didn't have to, as she had so many loving family members on standby to babysit. Evidently, Whitnei couldn't see that she was continuing the vicious cycle; and if she saw it, she couldn't do anything to stop it. She eventually lost custody of her own daughter, and her life spiraled downhill from there, as her boyfriend – the father of her child – was released from jail.

"Once he was released, she continued to follow him," said Brittney. "They had a very physical relationship; they were both physical. At some point, she stayed at the battered women's shelter, but they threw her out because she kept seeing him. Everyone was fed up with it. We knew she wasn't going to stop. That's when she began to distance herself. That's when she really began using."

The thought of her sister using cocaine was incomprehensible to Brittney. Whitnei made fun of crackheads. But then, Brittney noticed that her sister was rapidly losing weight.

One evening, Whitnei telephoned her sister and pleaded for someone to help her kick the habit.

"She admitted to me she was using and came to me for help," said Brittney. "I picked her up and brought her home with me. She bathed, and she had staples in her head from getting in a fight with her boyfriend and others – an incident that happened a month before that. But she had never taken out the staples. I found some of them in the tub, which was filthy. She laid on the sofa … I realized then that she was on pills, and she fell asleep."

Brittney called the coroner for help, who told her to call the ambulance and ask them to take her to the hospital; they could admit her to a rehab facility from there.

"I told her the ambulance was on the way and she jumped up ready to fight," Brittney continued. "I tried to talk to her. The ambulance got there and convinced her to at least go to the hospital with them so they could take the staples out. Her family went there to meet her, but they had already taken her to jail."

Instead of being admitted to a rehab facility, Whitnei was taken to jail on charges of forging stolen checks and cashing them. Police had outstanding warrants for her arrest. She was incarcerated for approximately one month, but after her release from jail, she returned to her sister's home and asked for help in straightening up her life.

"She came home," Brittney whispered. "She admitted to all of the using and asked me to bring her to an interview for a job … it was nice hanging out with Whitnei again. I really enjoyed the time with her and I was naïve enough to think it would all work out – but it didn't."

Whitnei met a new boyfriend who was involved in drugs, as well. In her final days, the two had an argument and he threw her out, said Brittney.

"She took off and started bouncing from home to home," she continued. "And then I heard the news that they had found another body …"

 



 

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