Lots of questions about CPS procedures

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over tired
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Lots of questions about CPS procedures

Postby over tired » Sun Dec 16, 2007 4:36 pm

A child in our family said she was being molested, she wasn't, :twisted: she was just mad at her stepfather because he moved the family away from her boyfriend.
Obviously CPS is involved. Once the child discloses the alleged abuse, isn't the interview supposed to stop right there so the interview process remains untainted, and the child taken to CPS for a "videotaped" interview?
Who must accompany the child and investigator to the interview?
Who is supposed to be in the interview room while the interview takes place?
Is it appropriate to put a child in sex abuse therapy before it's even determined the abuse took place?

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Postby Marina » Sun Dec 16, 2007 8:08 pm


Search on this website.


Also the link to state laws.

http://www.childwelfare.gov/systemwide/ ... ies/state/


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Postby Momoffor » Sun Dec 16, 2007 8:10 pm

for the answer to many of your questions, it would depend on the laws in your state.

For instance here in Virginia, any and all interviews are supposed to be audio taped. The interview with my children was not, and there were alot of indescrepencies that the investogator wrote down as part of her evidence of negelct that my children supposedly told her. The problem was that it was in terminology that my children do not use, and never happened so therefore I knew it was flat out lies. When called out about it, the investogator cried lack of funds to my lawyer is the reason it was not audiotaped.

As far as sexual allegations, these are criminal charges, so its supposed to have the investigotor and a detective present as well as video taped. The video tape is to prove that the child was not coerced into making allegations.

But again, it all depends on your state and what they have as procedures.

No parent can be present for interviews as they dont want the child to not be forthcoming with information.

What state are you in?

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Postby debbiescalese » Mon Dec 17, 2007 2:53 am

Previous poster is right it depends on the state your in for many of your questions. I'm in WV they do not audio/video tape the kids. Another words the child could say one thing and the worker can put down another and it is one vs the other with no proof either way. Many things also depend on the age of the child as well.
They can put a child in sex abuse therapy if they believe the child was sexually abuse another words if the child says it happend it did she needs therapy. Generally parents are not allowed to be there for the interview, in some places if they have the option they will let the parent watch the interview via a tv monitor or one way glass but not all places have that option.

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Postby over tired » Mon Dec 17, 2007 8:11 am

The child in question lives in Fla, I unfortunately live way up in NY. I'm having a hard time trying to find anything about CPS laws for interviewing in that state.
Let me explain this situation a little further that might help.
The family lived in Ga. While living there the youngest child saw some pornographic material her Uncle was viewing on the Internet. The child was supposed to be taking a nap in the other room. Her Uncle is not a pervet, he's a 30 year old single male. Had he known the child was up he would have clicked off the site. Like I said unfortunately that's not what happened. He did shut the computer down immediately when he realized she was in the room, unfortunately it was too late.
The child went to day care the next day and proceded to act out what she saw with another little girl, in the bathroom. They had their shirts off and were licking each other, giggling up a storm. As proper, CPS and both sets of parents were called immediately. CPS tried to make it sound like they had been watching porn with their father, not the Uncle. An investigation was done, but sort of a half assed job was done since only one other child (age 11) in the home was interviewed at that time. (They never interviewed the 14 year old, or her brother, age 10) She was brought before a judge and she swore that nobody was allowed to see dirty movies in their house. (BIll was infuriated with his brother kicked him out of the home.) They were getting ready to move to Fla when all of this went down, so the judge closed the case and sealed the files. This PO'd the Investigator, so she tells the family they have to give an address to where they are going to move to so a follow up investigation can be done. Bill had no problem with that, so he gave her the address. They were there about a month and CPS comes a knocking at the door. The file sent to Fla indicated that the children had been watching porn and the child lied o protect her dad.
It is during this investigating the oldest child tells she's being molested. The three girls all shared a room, two the same bed, but they were never asked if they had seen or heard anything bad happening. They were asked about the porn and again the situation is explained. The investigator doesn't buy it. I wasn't there so I don't know how the actual interview went down. Meaning were the questions leading and was the wording above the child's level of understanding. She 14, going on 20. I love this kid, but she's a manipulative brat at times and this time she's taken it to a new level.
At one point the kid writes a letter to the judge (in Fla) reviewing the case. (this is the judge that has removed Bill's parental rights) In the letter she explains that she only said it because she was really mad at her father for moving them to Fla, away from the boyfriend. This is when the judge is ready to drop the case, but the investigator objects saying the child must have been coerced into writing the statment.
So, the child is sent to a therapist and she procedes to weave this story of how she had been being molested since the age of 13. The therapist naturally wants to believe the kid. She tells the therapist that she wrote the letter because everyone in the house hated her now.
At one point during the taped interview, the interviewer makes note of a major inconsistancy. The child says she's been sexually active, and when asked in a different way, she answered no. She was taken to the interview by the same person who had done the home interview. Nobody else, just her and this woman. It's a 1/2 hr ride, plenty of time to build a story.
No forensic testing was done because she said she had been sexually active. Which I have no doubt she was. Her boyfriend was above the age of consent and would have faced some serious jail time too.

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Postby debbiescalese » Mon Dec 17, 2007 8:44 am

I don't understand a few things maybe you could clarify.
The porn thing happened in GA right? It went to court and the judge closed the case and sealed the file correct? So how was cps Ga able to send the records to Fl? Fla does not have juristiction in the case if the "crime" happend in another state. Are they just trying to make a case out of the 14 year old claiming she was molested? Did Ga start the case in FL were they the ones that allerted the cps office? Sounds to me like one hell of a lawsuit for one and second I think a lawyer should be able to get this case thrown out. It is almost like double jepordy they try him in Ga then in another state for the same thing?

IF the 14 year old is sexually active why has cps not moved to convict her rapist and yes that is what he is she is not of an age to consent to sex. I mean if they want a case so badly there you have one.

Where is this 14 year old now? Is she in foster care? What about the other kids?

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Postby over tired » Mon Dec 17, 2007 10:40 am

Yes. the porn thing happened in Ga. The investigator evidently took it upon herself to contact Fla to do a follow up. I don't think any files were exchanged according to the papers I've seen. Ga investigator just told them what her opinion of the situation was.
The child disclosed in the (home) interview (FLA) the alleged molestation. CPS then notified Ga. police and a warrent was issued. My nephew went voluntarily back to Ga, thinking since he'd done nothing wrong, it would all be cleared up. He got a lawyer, but he's been in jail for 3 months now with no trial date in site yet. The Da has offered a plea deal (wasn't that nice of him :x ) The deal was 10 years probation w/ a sex offender status. (Such a deal, can't imagine why someone who'd innocent wouldn't just grab that one :roll: ) Bill is facing 25 to 50 if convicted, Ga has the strictest laws I've ever seen. 25yrs. is the minimum, and that's without parole! They of course escalate all of their charges to "aggravate" status. That way they can really put the screws to ya. That's fine if someone is actually molesting kids, but not so great for those falsely accused.
Bill isn't being tried in Fla, Ga has juristiction because she said it happened in Ga. She thought they'd all have to go back to Ga to settle things. She's 14, she didn't really have a clue as to the kind of trouble she has started.
As to the boyfriend, she recanted that, and Fl never sent that report to Ga. I've made sure Bill's attorney is aware of it.
The child is in Fl, living with her mother, at her Aunt's house. Nobody is in foster care, they are all with thier mother. I called her this morning and gave her the # of a shelter that she might be qualified for. Her sister is kicking her out because she won't give her $850 a month for rent. The children will be brought to NY before the family allows them to be put in foster care down there. Ain't no way Fla is going to sell off (adopt out) any of this family. I'll be on the next plane to Fla and camped in that judges living room until they are released.

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Postby debbiescalese » Mon Dec 17, 2007 12:37 pm

OMG! What a nightmare! I feel so sorry for them. Just to let you know if she takes the kids to a shelter cps will be alerted and they will probably take the kids into foster care. Before she goes to a shelter you need to get some type of custody of the kids if that is the other option.
There is also a rep in GA I'm thinking they put her on the front page here. She works to help families contact her see what she can do. I think if anybody could help it's her. A poster on here Gary Shaw is in GA and has the site fixcps.com go to the boards on there see if he can give you any state specific info.
By the way he has a right to a speedy trial by jury you know! Three month in jail with no end in site and not having been convicted is not speedy.
Another thing if she is saying she had sex then recanted and they belive her why has she not had a physical sex abuse exam? And if she lied about that what else is this kid lieing about?? I'm also supprised CPS GA hasn't tried to get her back in the state she will need to testify at her dad's trial.
Just wondering but what did this girl think was going to happen when she accused her dad of molesting her? Did she seriously think she was going back to GA or something? Oh well she is 14 and lets face it even I wish I knew as much now as I "thought" I knew then!

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Postby over tired » Mon Dec 17, 2007 1:07 pm

This nightmare gets worse. Bet ya didn't think that was possible. Did I mention the mother is Bi-polar? The state sort of has legal custody, she has physical custody. It was determined that is should not be left alone with the kids. The poor thing is on so many drugs, it's a wonder she can function at all.
Each of the children has a guardian ade lidum. (I think tha's how it's spelled?) It means each kid has their own person assigned to look out for their welfare. So far it's been a good thing.
This is a family that should have been in the Social Services network, at least for mental health help. Bill could never afford counseling for what these poor kids have been put through.
Ga does not require a child to testify, the videotape is all that is required. Cute eh?
As to the sex exam, I'm not sure what good it would do. Her biological father sexually abused her until she was 4, at which time his mother took custody. This is such a mess you don't even want to know, most of it I am just learning about. Had I known any of it before he married into this "NUT FARM", I would have told him to run for the hills as fast as his legs would carry him!!!

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Recording the inteview

Postby Michael » Tue Dec 18, 2007 10:09 am

In Texas if a child is under 12 or MR then the interview is suppose to be conducted at a Child Advocacy center (if possible). However workers have toutch screen computers that are capeable of recording any interview and putting the interview onto a CD. Some workera also have cameras to record and place the recording on the CD.

I record many interviews and have them transcribed and place this version into the narrative.

If a child made an out cry of any sexual abuse the interview would always be converted to CD.

If the child is old enough (and since you mentined her boy friend) I assume that she is. I would ask her to wright a statement. This also serves to lock her story in the case of faulse claims of sex abuse by a relative.

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Postby katgotsteve » Sat Dec 22, 2007 7:39 am

i live in georgia and have gone through a similar situation both as a victim of the cps system and false allegations and as a family member of someone truly abused.
when my brother was 14 he was raped at knife point by my sister's husband. the guy was released on bond and my brother had to testify. when the child reaches a certain age, they cant hide behind the videotape. this child will have to testify.
when my husband was accused, it never made it to criminal charges becuase her story did not make sense and it changed several times. my attorney against dfacs told me that this case would be a defense attorney's dream and probably the easiest thing he ever defended becuase of the documentation i had. the mental state of family is admissable, i went back to the early 1900's and found sucide, depression and instutionalization on the paternal side, not to mention all we had to do is call the siblings of the father in to prove a point. also, i was lucky, i had the school to aid in my defense, past police records where the allegations had been made before against other people and past cps investigation reports of behavior that this child had prior to living with me.
the past instance of abuse can work in your favor, what works against you is the mother's mental capacity. often cps likes to use past history, the child was abused therefore she is at risk to be abused in the future. another factor is that she is under the age of 18 therefore she is more crediable. it is amazing how we live in a world of forensics, where one blood droplet can prove guilt of someone, yet in cases like this, you dont need physical evidence. i know children get abused, but most of the sexual abuse cases go to trail based only on the word of one person and the law does not take into account that children lie, their view is children do not lie.
please pm and give the county your brother is in. i will look for a website that i have been in past to send you. it list some statistics that can be used against dfacs, trust me, they hate to be called on their own statistics.

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RE: Lotsa Questions re: CPS Procedures

Postby cherubsmama » Sat Feb 02, 2008 11:11 pm

Policies and Procedures vary state to state...WA stste publishes Policy and Procedure Manual on-line...perhaps this is true of your state..that being said...there is a cavernous gap between policy and actual practice. I am certain that victims/survivors understand this statement.
We survived the system in part because,
I followed the principle, i"if it isn't documented, it wasn't said...if it isn't witnessed (by credible individuals..we invited community leaders incl. a state legislator into our home to witness our children's interviews)
We rallied an entire small community and members of our church as advocates..judge commented that his phone was constantly ringing.
We hired two different lawfirms to work co-operatively on our case.
Our daughter was returned and we legally adopted her. Unfortunately, the state fast tracked her sister's adoption into one of those highly subsidized group homes...we regard this loved one as a political hostage of the state.
Many years have past since this occured..our 14 year old adopted daughter and I lobby on child welfare issues and I am writing a book. (I wanted to wait until our daughter was old enough to give me her consent re: subject matter.
I joined this site to find other WA state families who are survivors of the system and willing to share their stories.
I also joined to help others (like yourself) which is why I responded to your question.

over tired
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Postby over tired » Sun Feb 03, 2008 4:47 pm

We got lucky, Fla dropped the case there. The kids packed up and left there so fast they left a smoke trail :lol:
The trial in Ga unfortunately was not dropped. That will be coming up sometime in March. This DA is a king size jerk. He knows the kid lied yet he insists on pursuing the case. He's so desperate to further his career he doesn't care if he gets an innocent man sent to jail. The minimum is 25 year in jail with a nice sex offender status to follow. Hopefully we get a fair minded jury that can see through the lies.

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