Friday, October 26, 2012

In Review: One of our Victims SPEAKS OUT!

`Bigamist' is out on the prowl again (2012)

(from 2005) by APRIL BETHEA (www.charlotteobserver.com)

A Mecklenburg County judge on Thursday refused to lower the $25,000 bond for a Virginia man indicted on a felony bigamy charge and arrested in Charlotte after his case was featured on the "Dr. Phil" program.

That means Charles Edward Hicks, 61, who has waived extradition, likely will remain in a Mecklenburg County jail while Virginia authorities prepare a governor's warrant that would send him back to that state, said Elizabeth Trosch, an assistant public defender who represented Hicks in court on Thursday.

"We're done with him in North Carolina," Trosch said.

Hicks was indicted earlier this month in a Chesapeake, Va. courtroom on a felony charge of bigamy. He was arrested in Charlotte on Dec. 12 after a Shelby woman who had seen Hicks featured on the "Dr. Phil" show that morning recognized him as the boyfriend of her sister and called police.

Hicks reportedly has been married seven times and divorced five.

I am the victim of a real live con man, bigamist, and in my opinion as well as many others, that my ex bigamist husband Ed Hicks is a textbook psychopath (sociopath/antisocial). Guess what? I met Ed Hicks on the Internet. It is my belief that the Internet has given these emotional vampires a whole new supply. Online dating sites allow these predators to be anyone they want to be and they present themselves as charming and charismatic, but they are MASTER manipulators that exhibit psychopathic and narcissistic traits.

Like so many Internet Predators - Ed Hicks....

  • lied to me about every facet of his life;
  • chopped away at my self esteem;
  • disrespected my boundaries;
  • took away my ability to trust another man;
  • forced me to refinance my home to make up for the money he took from me;
  • manipulated me;
  • controlled me;
  • used, betrayed, deceived, and emotionally abused me.

Unless people who use these dating sites start doing full background checks on the people they meet there and start a relationship with, they may find themselves in a situation similar to mine... or worse. I was not too smart because I did not do a background check; however, since I knew he was a U.S. Federal Government employee with a Department of Defense "Secret" security clearance, I thought that signaled verifiable integrity. I was wrong.

I cannot fault the Internet for my nightmare, nor can I really fault the online personals sites, albeit - I believe these personal sites that you pay money to join have the responsibility to make the members of their online dating communities aware of these types of predators and con artists. I believe they have the responsibility to put this information in a prominent place on their sites, not buried somewhere within the recesses of their pages so their members rarely find it. I believe they should link to databases and websites that contain honest information about these predators.

I urge each of you to BEWARE. You are taking a BIG risk in putting an ad online; you are taking a big risk in meeting someone on the Internet. You must protect yourself and learn the signs, the red flags of the online predator. Read all you can about cyberpaths, internet predators, online predators... all terms mean the same and they attack ADULTS as well as children! Read all you can about psychopaths (sociopaths). Your own best defense is educating yourself.

I am so very lucky; I am not financially ruined -- I am scarred, yet I feel so blessed. It could have been worse for me; it really could have. Some of Ed Hicks' wives are still emotionally ruined whether through depression, PTSD or addiction; some are financially ruined and will be for a long time. One thing we all have in common after the tornado of havoc this MAN creates, we are all victims of emotional & psychological abuse from this vampire; some are also victims of his physical abuse.

I must add in defense of meeting people on the Internet, had it not been for the support of the caring survivors of other psychopaths that I met through the MSN Psychopaths forum (no longer in use),  Donna at Lovefraud.com, and the group behind Exposing Online Predators and Cyberpaths, I would not be where I am today.

Yes, I met all of these wonderful, kind, compassionate people on the Internet! They have given me the courage, the strength, and the fortitude to become "a force to be reckoned with". Tennessee Williams character Blanche DuBois, said it beautifully in "A Streetcar Named Desire", "I have depended on the kindness of strangers". Yes, I met these "strangers" on the Internet; strangers who proved themselves and have become lifelong friends.

Put it in perspective, educate yourself, and beware of online predators, con men & women and other pathologicals who are lurking out there in cyberspace.

(Thank you for your courage & perspective!! Sandra now runs the site FIGHT BIGAMY to provide outreach and support to victims of bigamists. - EOPC)


Shelly said...

You know, we are life-long friends. You are all like family to me now. There is so much strength that you bring to me as you stand up for your rights and empower yourselves. We are in this together. We fall for guys we think are moral because we value morality and then we find that they are using the morality as a smokescreen so they can ensnare us. But if we hold fast to our values, set our boundaries, and REFUSE to let people treat us "less than" these kind of people do not stay in our lives. They look for the ones that compromise themselves and submitt to their insanity. But no more ladies--we are leading the pack for empowerment and self-respect. God bless and have a great Christmas.

Anonymous said...

Sandra, I am so thrilled that you were able to expose this sociopath and draw attention to the problem. These people are evil, and they prey upon the good-natured. I'm glad to know your strength. I hope all of us, working together, can begin to raise the awareness of this problem and prevent others from experiencing similar heartache.

EOPC TEAM said...

You are all so right. It takes all of us working together. Just like it takes more than one to pull together the articles, stories and victims on EOPC. Thank you Sandra for your honesty.