It’s difficult for a child to understand why anyone would want to hurt them. At such a young age, distinguishing what’s right from what’s wrong is hard to do.
When one little girl went missing, she wasn’t old enough to understand what was happening to her. However, once she grew up, she started to grasp the torment that was going on. Suddenly, it became crystal clear what she needed to do…
Who Is Rosalynn McGinnis?
In 1997, Rosalynn McGinnis was an 11-year-old girl going to school in Poteau, Oklahoma. She lived with her mother, who had recently divorced her stepfather, Henri Michael Piette because he was abusive. Little did Rosalynn’s mother know, Piette was abusing Rosalynn as well.
Piette was accused of first raping Rosalynn when she was 11 or 12 on a bunk bed in a back room of her home. Then he tried marrying her in a van and leading her to believe she was his “new” wife. Even worse, Piette decided he wanted to steal Rosalynn away from her family for good…
Leaving No Tracks
Piette also needed to make sure no one was looking for Rosalynn but the only way to do that was to make sure she was removed from the national missing-persons registry. Piette decided to drive to Phoenix and have Rosalynn removed.
Piette must have been upset that Rosalynn’s mother divorced him, so he decided to kidnap Rosalynn. As if raping her wasn’t enough, Piette went to Rosalynn’s school, grabbed her and told her she would never see her family again.
Rosalynn’s family looked everywhere for Rosalynn and she was put on the national missing-persons registry again. Posters of her face were hung everywhere and her family prayed for her return. Little did they know, Rosalynn was being repeatedly raped, stabbed, choked until unconscious, shot and beaten with baseball bats while she was held captive by Piette…
Held Captive In Mexico
The police searched for her but were unsuccessful, probably because Piette took her all the way to Mexico. By the time Rosalynn was 18, she had already been held captive for 6 years and was raising three children. Her life was a living nightmare and there didn’t seem to be an end in sight.
Being Held Against Her Will
In addition to the children Piette forced Rosalynn to have with him, Piette told his other children that Rosalynn was their “new mother.” He moved around the U.S. and Mexico with Rosalynn, but to throw investigators off, Piette would occasionally drive her back to her home state to mail letters. Still, no one had any idea where Rosalynn was…
Piette parked three blocks away from the Phoenix Police Department while three of his children were in the car. He told Rosalynn what she needed to tell the police and she only had two hours to do it. If she didn’t come back in two hours, Piette told her she would never see her children again…
A Big Lie
Scared for her children’s lives, Rosalynn lied to police and told them she had to run away when she was 12 because her parents and family were no good. She told them her parents were drug addicts and that after she ran away, she was raised by some “nice people.”
Removed From The Missing-Persons List
Rosalynn felt she had no choice but to convince the police she was fine and she succeeded. Officers removed her from the missing-persons list and Piette was thrilled. The moment Rosalynn walked out of the police department, however, she continued to be held against her will for the next 13 years…
During that time she gave birth to six more children and relied even more heavily on Piette. She was subjected to unconscionable and unthinkable levels of abuse and she lived in constant fear for her life every single day.
Lisa From California
At this point, Rosalynn had nine children and she knew she had to escape in order to ever live a normal life. Given what she had gone through, Rosalynn wasn’t sure what living a normal life would entail. Rosalynn remembered meeting a woman named Lisa from California and she thought that maybe she could help her…
“Rosalynn McGinnis Missing Child”
Rosalynn grew enough courage to tell Lisa that she had been taken and was being held hostage for many years. Lisa needed to get to the bottom of what happened to Rosalynn so she asked her what her real name is so she could search for her on the internet.
Lisa googled Rosalynn’s name and within moments, she found her missing poster. Lisa said the poster said “found” although Rosalynn was never actually found. Rosalynn told Lisa that she felt like she had no only choice but to walk into the Phoenix Police Department and lie to them…
Rosalynn continued to live under Piette’s control in a remote village in Mexico until she got sick and needed surgery on her gallbladder. Piette forced her to continue her strenuous regime of chores while recovering, which convinced her that she needed to escape.
In June 2016, Rosalynn finally saw her opportunity and she grabbed the little money she had earned and paid for a taxi to take her and her children to Oaxaca City, Mexico. There, she made a call that would change her life…
The Phone Call
Rosalynn got in contact with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children who told her to make her way to the U.S. Embassy. The organization and several other agencies helped her obtain emergency passports for her family to get across the border into the U.S.
Rosalynn was finally able to flee the country with eight of her children. Her oldest child had run away from home before the escape, but they have since been reunited. Right after, an FBI investigation began and Piette was arrested and sent back to Oklahoma. He has since been charged with two counts of molestation and one count each of first-degree rape and child abuse by injury…
Today, Rosalynn, 33 is living in the Midwest with her children, who range in age from 2 to 17-years-old. The children, who had been traumatized for most of their young lives are still being treated for post-traumatic stress disorder.
Rosalynn says she wants to study criminal law and work on missing-persons cases similar to her own, so something like this doesn’t happen again. She also wants safeguards to detect whether the person is in danger.