The Mills of God Grind Slowly . . .

Knox County Sheriff’s Office Investigator Brad Hall called Yolanda Harper and Russell Houser “Good Samaritans.”  Katie Allison Granju called them predators. who gave her son Henry the drugs that led to his fatal overdose.
Knoxville News Sentinel commenters called Katie a nutcase who was looking for someone to blame for her own parenting failures.  Katie replied that she was not a perfect parent, and that her son had made mistakes, but that she wanted to make sure what happened to him did not happen to anyone else’s beloved child.
An assistant District Attorney said Katie should shut up, and even commenters on her personal blog said she should move on.  Katie vowed never to stop seeking justice for Henry.
Katie wasn’t crazy, and Harper and Houser were no Good Samaritans.  Yesterday the pair were indicted on felony drug charges and taken into custody–based on activities they continued in the months after Henry’s death.  The Knoxville Police Department did what the KCSO would not–they listened to Katie and followed the leads she provided.  They conducted a professional and thorough investigation, and now our community is a safer place.
Thank you, Katie, for your advocacy for your son and by extension for all vulnerable children.  Thank you, KPD, for doing your job and doing it well.  And thank you to those of you who have read and shared my posts on Henry and his mother’s quest for justice.  It’s a happy day for all of us.



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  1. Julie says:

    It’s nice to hear some good news finally in all of this with Henry.

  2. Clisby says:

    Leslie, you are so right. From the beginning, the most shocking thing to me was that the KCSO didn’t appear to have the slightest interest in getting drug dealers off the street. I realize that law enforcement officials often have limited resources, and can’t pursue every single possible crime. While I understand Tennessee’s 2nd degree murder law, it didn’t surprise me that law enforcement thought they couldn’t make a case there. What did surprise me was that the KCSO wouldn’t immediately seize the prime opportunity to investigate what anyone with common sense could see was likely a couple of drug dealers. That is, from a cold, practical viewpoint – if you think you have a slim chance of convicting on 2nd degree murder but a good chance of convicting on felony drug dealing – I don’t have any problem with law enforcement concentrating on the drug dealing charge. Instead, KCSO concentrated on doing nothing, and the DA concentrated on pretending this was a stellar investigation.

  3. Amy K says:

    I couldn’t help but notice that some of the charges include selling drugs in school and day care zones. If they are convicted, I think that will solidify Katie Granju’s argument that they have preyed on children in your community. What a relief.

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