Invisible Children

4 Children of Patrick and Angel Henderson

Content note: Case narratives include descriptions of severe violence inflicted on children, including abuse and neglect, sexual violence, torture, and murder, as well as mentions of suicide and domestic violence. They also include photos of victims and perpetrators of violence.

Two children, a 14-year-old boy and a 9-year-old girl, were imprisoned, starved, and beaten by their adoptive parents, Patrick and Angel Henderson (pictured). The children were homeschooled. Their siblings, a 13-year-old and a 6-year-old, were not reported to be similarly abused.

From 2007 to 2019, the Hendersons “have been investigated for child abuse or neglect 18 times…, though only a 2014 allegation was substantiated.” The children last attended school in the Wakefield Community School District during the 2015-2016 school year, but were then pulled from school to be homeschooled. The children were kept locked in a bedroom with an alarm and were only allowed to leave to use the bathroom and visit the doctor. If the alarm went off, Angel Henderson would choke, kick, and beat them with a bat and belt. They were fed only one meal a day and were only allowed to eat if they finished their schoolwork, “which consisted of worksheets.” The children were forced to sleep in homemade straitjackets—one-piece pajamas with the legs sewn together from crotch to ankles and the arms sewn closed and attached to the back, with stocking caps tied over their heads and faces.

The abuse came to light when the boy ran away from home and the Hendersons reported him missing. When authorities found him, he disclosed the abuse to them. The Hendersons were charged with child abuse.

Date: January 9, 2019
Wakefield, Nebraska


Documents: Date:
Wakefield couple arrested for child abuse 01-09-2019
Wakefield couple charged with child abuse 01-09-2019