What is the Josh Burns Benevolence Fund?

When the Burns initially found themselves facing the accusation of child abuse and the removal of Naomi from their family, they could not forsee all that would be required of them in the battle for their daughter. Once the Burns realized the situation was not a simple misunderstanding and that they had really lost their daughter, the devastation was earthshattering. While trying to comprehend what had just happened, the Burns had to find an attorney who could lead them through the struggle to regain their family. Thankfully, the Burns were able to find an experienced attorney who is one of the most knowledgeable attorneys in the state on the issue of Abusive Head Trauma (aka: Shaken Baby Syndrome). The amount of time, research, and work involved in such a complicated medical case is extensive and costly. In order to retain their attorney and begin the process of bringing Naomi home, the Burns had to drain their savings and cash out both of their retirement accounts. Of course they did not give this a second thought. No parent would. As the weeks went on the Burns, as well as their family and friends, realized how incredibly costly the fight would actually be. All of the Burns’ money (above and beyond their bare bones, essential living expenses) and their families’ money went toward their case (and still does).

Soon friends, church members and extended family began to ask how they could donate money to the Burns’ case and The Josh Burns Benevolence Fund was established. In order to manage donations responsibly and ethically, it was decided the fund should be set up and administered by two people who were not part of the Burns family and that Josh and Brenda would not be able to access the funds directly. This would help assure donors that the funds were being used for their intended purpose.

Donations are used primarily to pay for Josh and Brenda’s legal fees and costs. Along with attorney fees, a large amount of donations have been used for expert witness costs. Many of the doctors who worked with the defense spent 30 to 40 plus hours just reviewing Naomi’s extensive medical records and researching her condition. Studying this case and testifying in court also took time away from their own practices. Over the past year, Josh has lost a substantial amount of wages, so on a few occasions money from the fund has gone toward paying for an essential living cost for the Burns such as rent. Donations also go toward slowly paying down Brenda’s court fees assessed by Judge Cavanaugh. These court fees include the fees for Brenda’s court appointed attorney and Naomi’s court appointed Ad Litem.

The Burns are incredibly thankful and humbled by the amount of money family, friends and even strangers have donated to their case. The task ahead is daunting as they still have substantial attorney fees to pay down and will be incurring extensive fees as they move forward with appeals. If you feel led to financially partner with the Burns in the fight for their family and for justice you can donate here. If you would like to donate but you have questions about how your donation will be used, that is understandable and we welcome you to fill out the contact form here. Your message will be forwarded to one of the Benevolence Fund administrators who will contact you and discuss any questions you may have.

9 thoughts to “What is the Josh Burns Benevolence Fund?”

  1. Most people don’t have the money or support to prevail against these institutions. Helping one family in their fight against mounting corruption will hopefully begin to make a difference. The Bible exhorts us to take care of orphans and widows, and visit prisoners: which is essentially the status to which the court is assigning this family.

  2. Is there a Facebook started for this Family LEAVE the Burns Family ALONE ??
    I Praise this STRONG Mommy , and pray for Daddy’s conviction to be over turned !!
    I would NEVER suggest one to sue , But I certainly would START with against this county & write a Grievance against this Prosecutor with The Attorney General Office !!! Violating their Civil Rights , Time for these Prosecutors to be WATCHED !!
    ALL of which can be done with out Legal Representation & on line !
    * Bless Mrs. Warner for her Aggressive No holds Bar Practice ! I would honestly hire her in my corner !

  3. I am NOT agreeable with others handling their FUNDS donated to there family & to assist them with the Illegal Activity of this County !
    That being said My question is what about the Burns family having to Maintain TWO Separate Homes ? Shame on that Jury , and I certainly HOPE that this don’t happen to any other Family that resides in that County .

    1. Admin Note: This is a note from one of the two administrators of the fund.

      Dear Sad Sad,

      One of the reasons the Burns’ fund was initiated and is administered by a team outside the Burns family and extended family is to protect them from accusations that they would only be raising funds for themselves and not for their legal expenses. Secondly, we have seen that there is a significant increase of trust with donor contacts when others have advocated on the Burns’ behalf…especially when requesting finances. Instead of their raising funds for themselves, funds are being raised for them. The fund is administered by people who are “on the ground” with them. As we have advocated for them in this, the response since April 2014 has been amazing.

      The fund administration team is informed of payments that need to be made for expert witnesses, retaining other specialized attorneys, transcript request expenses, court cost expenses, etc… These expenses are paid per related invoices, bills, etc…and recorded accordingly.

      Thirdly, as Josh and Brenda have been so busy tending to hearings, trials, work, caring for their precious daughter Naomi, and dealing with utter shell-shock of seeing their family torn apart, they would not have the time to tend to the work related to initiating and managing these fundraising and bill payment efforts.

      In handling these things, the use of an administration team has proven very effective and has lifted the level of integrity and trust that this type of fundraising requires to be successful.

      Since April 2014, donations have been received from hundreds of supporters from across the United States….from AK to CA to MA…from FL to WA. Donations have come from folks the Burns do not even know, who we do not even know…from folks who have heard about their story and have felt led to support them.

      The Josh Burns Benevolence Fund administration team commits to all prospective donors and actual donors that 100% of received funds will go to defray the legal related expenses the Burns’ family faces….and continues to face. This is a voluntary service to them. No fees are paid for any administrative fees or costs.

      For the administrative team, serving the Burns in this way is an honor and privilege.

  4. I came from a physically abusive home, but there was a lot of love too. My parents came from very difficult upbringings and there were no parenting classes that explained the cycle of abuse in generations. My parents were ALSO very loving, just had bad tempers. I was privileged enough to take sociology classes in college that explained all this, and never abused my children. I never even slapped them or spanked them in anger. None of my other siblings did either and we all have very well-adjusted children.
    If my parents had been taken to court it would have been devastating to all of us.
    In my parents later years they realized that their behavior had been out of line and apologized to us, along with true repentance and both found the Lord. We had many wonderful years with our parents long after leaving home. None of my siblings ended in jail, or anything even remotely similar to the statistics of children placed in the Foster Care system, which would have happened to us if CPS had ever been involved. None of us ever had broken bones, etc.!
    I believe in the Burns’ family and feel that letters should be written to the judge and jury of his child abuse case. What CPS has done here is clearly “illegal” and they are the ones who should be put on trial.
    I will pray for this family continually and desire to help support the reuniting of this dear husband and wife, with their daughter! Amen, and Come Lord Jesus!

    1. Thank you for your comments. Josh did not come from an abusive home. He has two loving parents, and two loving in-laws. Foster Care is a rough place for kids many times. There are many good foster homes out there, but the State does not always do an effective job screening out the bad homes.

  5. I pray that God takes action on the CPS workers that are destroying this family and this community. Just maybe the judge should get disbarred for believing in the lies. I lived in the foster care system, I don’t recommend it for anyone, they are very scary places . Josh and Brenda are doing the right thing. I would go into hiding to.
    There are more Abuse cases that are truly Abuse cases that need to be looked at like this one and convict the real abusive parents not Josh Burns who did nothing wrong. she was two months old and is learning to move around. God Bless Ms.Warner for sticking up for this LOVING FAMILY. Praying very hard for you all!!!!

  6. This father seems intelligent and very believable. Accidents happen. My first baby fell off the sofa at 3 months onto carpet an had no evidence of injury. This truly sounds like a bigger injury resulting from birth. How a jury could find this man guilty is deplorable. I have worked around law enforcement over 30 yrs. They have a job to do but, many times go to far as their training encourages.

  7. This just breaks my heart, and also frustrates me. I simply do not understand how a community service, which is supposed to help and protect, can be allowed to abuse this family. The irony is so sad and infuriating. I sincerely hope the Burns’ family is not torn further apart, and that they be allowed to heal as a family as much as possible.

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