Articles on DEATHS of children in the System

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Postby Marina » Fri Dec 05, 2008 10:33 pm ... ml?ref=rss

Edmonton foster mother found guilty of manslaughter

Last Updated: Saturday, November 29, 2008 | 10:54 PM MT
CBC News

An Edmonton foster mother covered her mouth and broke down in tears after a jury found her guilty of manslaughter in the death of a three-year-old boy in her care.

The verdict was handed down late Saturday afternoon, following two days of deliberations and a five-week trial.


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Postby Marina » Fri Dec 05, 2008 10:39 pm ... source=rss

Officials failed to spot abuse in case of beaten, starved girl

By Hilary Costa and John Simerman
Contra Costa Times
Updated: 11/30/2008 05:17:17 PM PST


How it could happen, and how welfare workers
charged with Jazzmin's care could have missed it, are questions that may never be fully answered. But in interviews with family and classmates, with police, in court papers, a coroner's report and in hundreds of pages of foster care records obtained by the Times, a woeful sketch of Jazzmin's life emerges


Police say Davis was a crafty matriarch who took pains to prepare the house and kids for social worker visits. "It's clear that she was manipulating everybody," Orman said.

She kept the twins silent as she worked part time at a mall store, and she somehow got through a reported March 2008 family visit with the San Francisco social worker. That was the last before Jazzmin's death.


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Postby Marina » Fri Dec 05, 2008 10:43 pm ... source=rss

Records show gaps in child welfare oversight before Jazzmin's death
Agency took trust over proof

By John Simerman and Hilary Costa
Contra Costa Times
Posted: 11/29/2008 02:59:26 PM PST

The child welfare worker overseeing an Antioch foster child who police say was tortured for 15 months and starved to death by her foster mother violated state regulations that require regular reports from doctors, therapists and others.

She also did not verify that Jazzmin Davis had enrolled for her freshman year in high school, when police say she was isolated and abused in her Antioch home.

The head of the San Francisco Human Services Agency acknowledged last week that the social worker trusted Jazzmin's paternal aunt and foster mother, Shemeeka Davis, to the point of failing to seek required proof of her long-overdue medical care.

Agency Executive Director Trent Rhorer said the case notes, which the Times obtained through a court petition, raise "questions about the medical documentation and the comfort the child welfare worker had with the caretaker (Davis), and whether that obfuscated her objective assessment of the case."

It also has prompted an internal review of the agency's practice of seeking exemptions that allow social workers to visit some foster families every six months, instead of monthly, Rhorer said.

The agency oversaw the care of Jazzmin and her twin brother from their placement as infants with Davis, until she was awarded guardianship six days before Jazzmin's Sept. 2 death.

The agency followed that biannual schedule with the twins for more than a decade — despite Jazzmin's reported history of

behavior problems at school and home; repeated complaints Davis made about Jazzmin's behavior and her own ability to parent her; and Davis' years-long pattern of losing or avoiding contact with social workers, to the point that they sent telegrams to reach her.

Rhorer said a lack of crisis line calls about the twins, and no evidence of abuse in the case file, help prove the veteran child welfare worker, Ann Marie Smith, had little cause to doubt Shemeeka Davis' honesty.

"A placement that's as stable as this, for as long as this — there was no reason to believe Shemeeka would be hiding anything, or Jazzmin hiding anything," said Rhorer. "There were no cues."

Davis, 38, now sits in a Richmond jail in lieu of $1.5 million bail, facing charges of murder in Jazzmin's death and torture and abuse of both twins. She has declined interview requests.

Before her arrest, Shemeeka "ingested a handful of pills," then told police she hit Jazzmin with a wooden dowel and a belt that day "because she continually defies her and cut her holes in her jeans," according to a search warrant affidavit.

Jazzmin's case file shows no sign that Smith — who started with the agency nearly 30 years ago — sought to verify the aunt's assertions in the past several years, including one in 2006 that Jazzmin was undergoing regular therapy for behavior problems.

Meanwhile, Smith steered the family toward legal guardianship as police say Davis intensified her abuse, sometimes locking the twins in a small bedroom closet for up to 10 hours.

In July, 2007, after struggling to reach Davis, Smith wrote her a letter suggesting that a lower-level social worker, whose job it was to annually run down a checklist on the home's condition, could conduct the next child welfare visit.

"If the kids are home, then she can see them and I won't have to come out again," Smith wrote in the letter, where she also suggested a move to guardianship that would end the county's oversight. Neither Davis nor the twins appeared at the Aug. 27 court hearing that finalized Davis' guardianship.

Attempts to reach Smith by phone, e-mail and at her home were unsuccessful. Rhorer said she is on leave. He said he couldn't explain Smith's letter but that the agency is pushing its social workers to seek guardianship and adoption.

One child welfare advocate, told of the contents of the letter and the foster care notes, cited several red flags that warranted more scrutiny. Among them:

Smith was alerted to a live-in boyfriend, Jackie Turner, with a recent criminal drug history. She told Davis he needed to leave. Police now say he never left.

A near-total dearth of records of doctor's visits for Jazzmin, and none since 2003, despite regulations requiring periodic checkups.

No evidence to verify Davis' claim that Jazzmin was obtaining therapy after a diagnosis of Oppositional Defiant Disorder and years of trouble in school and at home.

"There was fundamentally insufficient monitoring of the case," said William Grimm, senior attorney at the National Center for Youth Law in Oakland, who has led challenges to child welfare practices in several states. "The practice of asking the foster mother or father, they telling you something and taking it as gospel — it's just not the way investigations and monitoring of a child's placement can be done."

State regulations direct that social workers "shall have contact with other professionals working with the child, parents/guardians, and out-of-home care provider ..." Among the professionals specified in the regulations are physicians and therapists. The social worker "shall request written reports from the professionals ..." and "shall ensure that such reports are received and documented in the case record," they state.

Smith's notes from June 2006 say that Antioch therapist Nanette Kappl had requested a medication evaluation for Jazzmin. "Jazzmin ... is so out of control at home that her caretaker thought about giving her up but has changed her mind," Smith wrote.

A month later, Smith reports after a phone call with Davis that both twins "are doing well."

Kappl told the Times she treated Jazzmin "at most four times." She said Jazzmin did not appear physically unhealthy, but that mentally, "there was a prevailing sadness there."

School officials are not specifically listed among the child's "collateral contacts" who social workers should consult, but it should be standard practice, said Grimm.

"That's just sort of one of the fundamental things you check out with children is, are they going to school, how are they doing in school, are they skipping class, how are their grades," he said. "Basic things you ask about your own child."

The infrequent home visits, he said, would have made it easier for Davis to put on what police call a "good show," fixing up the house and prepping the twins for home visits.

Also living there were Turner, Davis' two teenage sons and a 7-year-old daughter. Police said her other three children weren't physically abused. Her rental of the four-bedroom house, in a newer Antioch neighborhood, was subsidized by $1,700 per month from Section 8 housing funds. Davis also received more than $13,100 per year for the twins' care.

Among the state criteria for exemptions to monthly visits is that the child "has no serious emotional problems caused or aggravated by the placement." Rhorer said the agency seeks the exemption in a few hundred cases and is reviewing them all as a result of Jazzmin's death.

The last recorded home visit for the twins came March 12, the case log shows. Like other recent entries from Smith, it is brief and upbeat.

"The twins are in the ninth grade and have improved their grades ... Jazzmin has C's which is great for her. The twins appear to be very content — there are no more problems and issues with Jazzmin ... Both children were friendly, talkative, and appeared to be very health (sic)."

Smith maintains she visited in person, and Rhorer said she described it in detail to police. Still, Antioch police Lt. Leonard Orman said he's not completely certain, given the signs of abuse.

The autopsy report describes a 15-year-old body weighing only 78 pounds and laden with scars and burn marks old and new, and five broken teeth.

Police seized an array of suspected weapons, including a clothes iron, belts, a carpet tack strip, a lamp base and a workout weight.

Jazzmin's brother was enrolled in school, but police say he suffered similar abuse.

"He's just a sweet, sweet boy. His attitude was, 'If I had been better, this wouldn't have happened,'" Antioch police Sgt. Diane Aguinaga said. "It's so involved and so tragic and so sad. Normal people, I think, can't understand it."

A social worker assigned to such a long-term and supposedly stable foster placement wouldn't have searched beneath the kids' clothes for injuries without reports of abuse, said Rhorer. He said there were no apparent clues.

Still, said Antioch police Lt. Leonard Orman, "Even if you missed the abuse, to look at those kids in the last year and think they were healthy would have been — they didn't look healthy."

The log for the final home visit also mentions a recent visit by the children's court-appointed advocate, Tali Soltz, who said she couldn't comment on the visit. "I feel like everyone did their jobs, as best as I can tell," she said. "I feel like this is a tragedy for all of us."

Rhorer suggested a communitywide failure, noting that Jazzmin's old school friends said they saw her scarred and bruised, and that no teachers reported it. No neighbors came forward either.

Police say Davis had a charm that calmed suspicions. She put off welfare visits to make her home "look as right as she could," Orman said, and may have doctored a report card found on the refrigerator.

"She ran the show," Orman said. "The people in that house, you did what she said or things were not pleasant."

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Postby Marina » Fri Dec 05, 2008 10:47 pm ... le/3326649

Foster child’s family united in mourning

Published: December 1, 2008

The family of John Gifford, 5, was united in love for him at a joint funeral service for his mother’s and father’s families.


All of John’s minor siblings are in state custody and were not at his funeral Sunday.

DHS will hold a separate funeral service for John, but the public and his biological family will not be allowed to attend.

DHS has declined to disclose the time and location of the service. It was not clear whether his minor siblings will attend.

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Postby Marina » Sun Dec 07, 2008 11:57 am ... 22283.html

December 4, 2008
Man convicted of murder for beating toddler

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - A man who struck his girlfriend's 3-year-old nephew because he was angry the toddler had made a mess in their apartment has been convicted of second-degree murder in a case that led to a review of Rhode Island's foster care system. Gilbert Delestre ...


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Postby Marina » Sat Dec 13, 2008 7:08 pm

Lincoln sisters in foster care killed in Oklahoma fire

BY GREG HARTON Northwest Arkansas Times

Posted on Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Two young sisters from Lincoln who were in Oklahoma foster care died over the weekend in a mobile home fire near Tahlequah, Okla.

Shyann Lou Garcia, 10, and Rachel Lynn Newberry, 6, died when the mobile home they shared with foster parents in the Welling community burned at about 1 a.m. Sunday. Welling is a rural area about six miles southeast of Tahlequah in Cherokee County.

Gene Wheat, an agent supervisor for the Oklahoma State Fire Marshal, said Tuesday that the fire was accidental and started near a woodburning stove in the middle of the double-wide mobile home in which the four were sleeping. The mobile home also had a 900-square-foot addition connected to it.

Wheat said the foster parents - Daniel Buzzard, 66, and his wife, Anna Mae, 76 - were awakened by the fire and the husband got his wife outside. But before her husband noticed, his wife had gone back inside the mobile home in an unsuccessful attempt to reach the girls. He got her out of the structure, but she suffered burns to about 75 percent of her body, a spokesman for the Cherokee County Sheriff's Office said Tuesday afternoon.

Anna Mae Buzzard was in critical condition Tuesday at Hillcrest Medical Center in Tulsa, Okla., according to Wheat.

The home, which was engulfed by the time firefighters from the Welling Fire Department arrived, showed no evidence of having any functioning smoke detectors, Wheat said. Smoke detectors would have likely saved the girls' lives by providing early warning, he said.

Wheat said fire marshal investigators learned from neighbors that the Buzzards had been foster parents for years and they were described as "good Samaritan" type of people.

"Everybody referred to them as mom and papa," Wheat said.

An obituary for the two girls released Tuesday listed their mother as Crissy Newberry of Lincoln. Shyann's father was listed as Salvador Garcia.

It remained unclear Tuesday what circumstances led to the girls' placement in the state of Oklahoma's care. Steven Edwards, county director for the Oklahoma Department of Human Services in Cherokee County, declined comment and referred all questions to the agency's communications office in Oklahoma City.

George Earl Johnson Jr., communications director for the OKDHS, said he could not discuss specifics about any DHS case or children in the state's care. He said his agency has an investigation of its own into the girls' deaths and will turn over its results to the district attorney for the Tahlequah area. Nothing about the OKDHS investigation is public record unless the district attorney seeks felony charges in such circumstances, Johnson said.

In general, Johnson said, children can be taken into the care of OKDHS if an incident of abuse or neglect is suspected or found to have happened within the borders of Oklahoma, no matter where the family is from. The state also is part of an interstate compact through which one state might accept children from another state's foster care system if it's determined to be in the best interests of the children.

Johnson said state law prevented him from revealing any details regarding Shyann and Rachel's placement with the Buzzard family. He said the death of any children is a tragedy and, because the girls were in state care, the state will "take care of everything as though we are the family."

Wheat urged residents who use wood-burning stoves to make sure they and any flues connected to them are properly cleaned, and that no combustible materials are near the stove. He also stressed that smoke alarms save lives by providing early detection and better likelihood of escape.


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Postby Marina » Sun Dec 14, 2008 7:59 pm

Birth mother of murdered Cass County teen speaks out

Posted: Dec 12, 2008 08:00 PM EST

Updated: Dec 12, 2008 08:00 PM EST

CASS COUNTY, TX (KSLA) - The biological mother of a child allegedly killed by his adoptive mother wants to know how such a crime could have happened to her son.

"I was devastated because I was crying. How could this happen to him?" asks Rebecca Henson.

At first, Henson thought it was someone else's child that was killed. Then, five days went by after reports that teenager Samuel Hudson was killed and other children were abused.

"The kids were abused for a very long time," says Cass County D.A. Clint Allen.

Then Rebecca got a shocking phone call from her mother-in-law. Samuel was actually her son David. The other two children who were allegedly abused, confined in their rooms and deprived of food, water, and bathroom privileges, were also hers.

"To find out that Samuel was my David, I wasn't there to see him put to rest. I was deprived of that and that's not right because I'm the natural mother."

Not only does Henson blame Child Protective Services for that, but also for placing her children in the care of William Hudson, who faces of charge of tampering with evidence, and Cynthia Hudson, who's facing charges in the death of Samuel.

"They broke their trust to me. They lied to me. They told me that this woman was honest, she was a good mother. She was a teacher," Henson said.

Henson gave up her rights to her children five years ago after an apparent run-in with the law she says was based on false accusations. Now she wants another chance to give her two other children a safe home.

"No child deserves to have to go through what mine have been going through and it has to stop," she said.

Before speaking with Henson, a CPS spokesman said all three children in this case were home schooled, and that it's difficult to monitor those cases. When children are in school, CPS says teachers are normally a child's first defense from abuse.

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Postby Marina » Wed Dec 17, 2008 6:33 pm ... e_had.html

Girl who died at Parmadale had been physically restrained

Posted by Rachel Dissell/Plain Dealer Reporter December 15, 2008 18:35PM
Categories: Breaking News, Real Time News

PARMA — A 17-year-old girl who died Saturday at Parmadale Family Services was physically restrained by staff shortly before she died.

Faith Finley was in the custody of Summit County Children and Family Services and had been placed at the residential treatment center for several months.

Police records show a member of the Parmadale staff called 9-1-1 and said that Faith was unresponsive and that her breathing had been shallow. A second staffer called and said staff was administering CPR.

Tom Mullen — president of Catholic Charities, the agency that runs Parmadale — said that Faith had been acting out and aggressively came down a hallway toward staff, who restrained her. Restraint techniques are meant to keep the child and staff safe, he said.

"Right now, we still don't know what happened," he said.

Mullen said the most important thing at this point is to comfort Faith's family and the people affected by the death.

He could not recall any other deaths of children at the facility during the 22 years he's been involved with the agency.

The Cuyahoga County coroner's office has not ruled on the cause of death. A spokesman said there did not appear to be trauma to her body. Other tests could take weeks to complete.

"This is really a sad day for us," said John Saros, executive director of Summit County Children Services, which will assist with funeral arrangements.

Parma police, Cuyahoga County Children and Family Services and the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services each will investigate.

Faith's mother, Antionette, said she recently complained about the use of restraints against both of her daughters during a meeting about their progress. Faith's twin sister is at a facility in Berea.

"For her twin, this is one of the most difficult losses in the world," said Antionette Finley. She said her daughters have been in county custody since she called police in April about their unruly behavior.

She also said Faith had earlier broken her leg at Parmadale after she jumped out a window with several other girls in an attempt to sneak out to a party.

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Postby Marina » Tue Dec 30, 2008 8:19 pm

Foster father was alone with baby when he stopped breathing

The Bakersfield Californian | Wednesday, Dec 24 2008 10:41 AM
Last Updated: Wednesday, Dec 24 2008 3:45 PM

New information in the death of a 5-month-old foster child shows that his foster father was home alone with him Dec. 15 when the baby stopped breathing, a search warrant revealed.

The baby died Dec. 18 at Valley Children’s Hospital in Madera, the coroner has ruled.

The foster father was home alone with the child in a mobile home on Eucalyptus Drive where the child stopped breathing, deputies reported in a search warrant.

He called his wife, who then called for medical aid, the warrant said.

Deputies reported the child had bruises on the left side of his face, the right side of his forehead and bleeding in the brain.

But the cause of death remains pending, a coroner official said Wednesday.

No charges have been filed in connection with the case.

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Postby Marina » Wed Dec 31, 2008 5:23 pm ... spx?rss=68

Investigators Look Into Converse Tot's Death

Reported by: Kristina De Leon
Email: [email protected]
Last Update: 12/29 4:37 pm

CONVERSE -- News 4 WOAI is looking into new developments in the case of an 18-month-old girl who died while in foster care.

Little Zahara Purvis was buried on Friday. Now, the investigation begins into what caused her life to be cut so short.

The 18-month-old was living at a Converse home in foster care before her death. The little girl was rushed to Northeast Methodist Hospital in Live Oak back on Dec. 21. She died in the emergency room.

An autopsy was performed the next day. So far, no charges have been filed in this case. Converse police are waiting on the final autopsy results to determine how she died. It could take weeks before those results are back.

Child Protective Services has since removed the two other foster children in the home, which is standard procedure.

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Postby Marina » Fri Jan 16, 2009 7:23 am ... 14.article

Foster families could face ban on owning some pets

January 14, 2009

Sun-Times News Group
The death of a 4-year-old mauled by at least one Rottweiler owned by his foster family could lead to a crackdown on how the state regulates the care of foster children in homes with animals.

Rep. Rosemary Mulligan (R-Des Plaines) said the Illinois House committee that oversees the Department of Children and Family Services might consider tough legislation outlawing dangerous dogs in foster homes.

“If you want to be a foster parent, forgoing a dog could be it,’’ Mulligan said. “The primary thing you want to do is err on the side of protection of the child.”

DCFS officials were awaiting results of an independent inquiry by a Child Death Review Team before deciding to make any changes.

Agency spokesman Kendall Marlowe said the teams review all serious injuries and deaths to children, even those not in foster care.

“We look to their recommendations for any changes that can effectively prevent these tragedies,’’ he said.

Alex Angulo died Sunday afternoon at his foster family’s Southwest Side home after he let himself out of the house and was attacked by one or both of the Rottweilers owned by the family.

The dogs were kept outside. An adult living in the house was using a snowblower in the back at the time of the attack, police said.

Alex was in the care of a 77-year-old woman in the home. But he was scheduled to move this week into the home of another family who planned to adopt him, according to court records. Alex had been in several foster homes since a week after he was born.

DCFS caseworkers were aware the animals were in the house and had recently told the family to have the dogs’ shots -- which were good through last Oct. 31 -- updated, Marlowe said. The caseworker also had been assured that the dogs were kept outside and that the child would not be unsupervised.

The Cook County Public Guardian also on Tuesday called for more stringent controls over how foster families with animals keep a child safe, saying it’s too easy for small children to accidentally provoke animals.

“There should be a whole protocol for issues of pets in general,’’ Cook County Public Guardian Robert Harris said.

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Postby Marina » Tue Feb 10, 2009 9:34 am ... trampoline

4 year old boy strangled on trampoline
Story By: Bea Karnes
Source: KOAA

Published Fri Feb 06, 2009, 02:52 PM MST
Updated Fri Feb 06, 2009, 08:00 PM MST

A safety net designed to protect children has instead claimed a young life.

A four year old boy died in Colorado Springs Friday after he became entangled in the rope holding up a safety net around a trampoline. The boy was a foster child. It happened at the family home on Wooten Drive on the east side of Springs. The foster mother performed CPR on the child, but he was pronounced dead at Memorial Hospital.

Colorado Springs Police report that the foster mother was making lunch while the boy was jumping on the trampoline outside. She sent the boy's three-year-old biological sister outside to call him in for lunch. The girl came back inside, and said he wasn't coming in. The foster mother went outside, found the child, and began CPR.

The girl has been taken out of the home for a formal interview. It's not known at this point if she will be returned to the foster home.

Police say it appears to be an accident, and don't believe any charges will be filed. Police also said they haven't found any former complaints made against that foster mother. The children were brought there from the Department of Human Services in Denver.

According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, in 2007 alone, more than 100,000 people were treated for trampoline related injuries.

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Postby Marina » Sat Feb 14, 2009 8:55 pm ... 08/179753/

Mother of dead Prince William girl is charged

Published: January 16, 2009

WOODBRIDGE -- Authorities have charged a Prince William County woman in connection with the discovery of her 13-year-old daughter's body.

Alfreedia Gregg-Glover, 44, is charged with felony child neglect and filing a false police report in the disappearance and death of Alexis Glover.


Gregg-Glover adopted Alexis, who had been a foster child, five years ago.


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Postby Marina » Wed Feb 25, 2009 4:35 pm ... 022609.txt

Trail of tears

By Joe Southern
Updated: 02.24.09

An annual trek on the Prairie View Trail Ride turned into a trail of tears Sunday when a pregnant foster child died of apparent carbon monoxide poisoning in a recreational vehicle in the Sunny Side community northwest of Pattison.

Glenda Pinkney, 19, of Houston, was participating in the annual trial ride with her foster family when they were camped Saturday night. The family, consisting of John and Ella Briscoe and five foster children – all girls ranging in age from 13-19 – were making the yearly ride to the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. Pinkney was five months pregnant at the time.

According to Waller County Sheriff Glenn Smith, the children awoke Sunday morning feeling woozy. Pinkney could not be revived. Three of the girls were taken to a Katy hospital for treatment and a fourth was flown to a Houston hospital.

The children had been sleeping in the rear of the RV near where a generator had been running. The Briscoes were in the other end and were not overcome by the fumes.

“There were no signs of criminal or negligent activity, none that we could see at all,” Smith said.

He said the case was investigated by Justice of the Peace Ted Krenek, who ordered an autopsy. The Texas Department of Child Protective Services was also notified and is conducting its own investigation.

Smith said it appears clear that the death was accidental and caused by the generator mounted on the rear of the RV.

“It was an older model RV motor home that the family had used for the last five or six years,” he said.

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Postby Marina » Wed Feb 25, 2009 4:40 pm

Two DCF Workers Fired Over Toddler's Death

Thursday, January 22, 2009 –
updated: 11:19 pm EST January 22, 2009

LAKE COUNTY, Fla. -- Late Thursday afternoon, Florida's Department of Children and Families admitted it failed to protect a 15-month-old Tavares boy before he died. Two DCF workers have now been fired over little Blake Rupe's death.


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Postby Marina » Wed Feb 25, 2009 4:54 pm

Jan 24, 2009 8:02 am US/Eastern
NY Woman Gets Probation In Death Of Foster Child

A New York health care aide will serve five years' probation after admitting to killing her 6-year-old foster daughter by giving her a medicated patch meant for an adult.

Joanne Alvarez agreed to plead guilty in Manhattan Supreme Court to criminally negligent homicide in the death of the girl. The charge normally carries a sentence of four years in prison.


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Postby Marina » Sat Mar 14, 2009 8:20 pm

Child dies in Colorado Springs trampoline accident

Associated Press - February 6, 2009 10:04 PM ET

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) - Authorities say a 4-year-old boy is dead following a freak trampoline accident in east Colorado Springs.

Police Lt. Brian Ritz says the Denver boy was playing on the trampoline in the backyard of his foster mother's home Friday. He says the boy apparently choked to death after getting his head stuck in a cord hanging from some safety netting surrounding the trampoline.

Ritz says the foster mother told police she was making lunch around noon and sent the boy's 3-year-old sister out to get him. The girl came back and said her brother wasn't coming.

Ritz says the woman then went to get the boy and found him slumped on the trampoline with his head caught in the cord.

The boy was taken to a Colorado Springs hospital, where he was pronounced dead. No names were released.

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Postby Marina » Sun Apr 12, 2009 8:40 am ... 3&tc=yahoo

DCF says slain girl's adoptive parents passed background checks
The agency found nothing in the Rays' past to indicate they might harm a child

By Naseem Sowti Miller
Staff writer

Published: Saturday, April 11, 2009 at 6:30 a.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, April 11, 2009 at 12:14 a.m.

OCALA - A woman charged this week with murdering her adopted daughter passed all the required background checks before taking custody of the girl last year, a state Department of Children and Families spokeswoman said Friday.

Officials at DCF, Kids Central Inc., and Children's Home Society of Florida reviewed the adoption of two-year-old Faith Ray and found there was nothing in the adoptive parents' past to indicate they might harm the child, a DCF spokeswoman said Friday.


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Postby Marina » Thu May 07, 2009 6:35 pm

Thursday, May. 07, 2009
Foster mom-nurse charged in baby’s death
By Lee Higgins - [email protected]

A foster mother who is a neonatal intensive care nurse was arrested Wednesday, accused of taping a pacifier to the mouth of a 9-month-old boy who suffocated.

Angela Deniece Dukes, 30, of St. Andrews Road, is charged with unlawful neglect of a child, SLED spokeswoman Jennifer Timmons said.

Dukes is accused in the death of Curtis Williams, of Cayce, whom she found unresponsive on an adult bed at her St. Andrews Road apartment, authorities said.


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