In California, many dependent children go into foster care and are never placed with family members. Foster care can be a dangerous placed for children and those charged with protecting them – – the social workers who removed them from their parents – – have been known to fail at this task.
In Sacramento, California, a teenager, only identified as Kyle Doe, plans to sue Child Protective Services for the abuse he suffered in foster care. According to Teenage Torture Victim Sues County For Not Taking Action Against His Guardian, in the Bellingham Herald, this child reports that he escaped the home in December of 2008 to a nearby gym after he was hit with a baseball bat, beaten with a flashlight, cut with a knife, and chained to a table. The adult abusers in this case have all been convicted of their crimes. Two adults were sentenced to between 30 and 34 years in prison.
Kyle alleges that Child Protective Services ignored and mishandled the evidence of his abuse and neglect over a six year period. He now lives with his aunt and uncle and plans to hold a news conference this week in Sacramento, California.
Two years ago, a grand jury criticized Sacramento’s Child Protective Services as having “persistent, recurring and systemic problems resulting in child abuse related deaths.” The grand jury went on to criticize the responsible authorities who failed to take corrective actions recommended in previous reports.
When a child is removed from his parent’s care, it is critical that he is placed with loving family or close family friends, if possible. Not only do family and friends generally help facilitate the reunification process with parents better than strangers, children are safer when they have a relationship to their caretakers. Strangers have a financial interest in being foster parents and may not put the child’s interests before the check.
If your child has been removed by Child Protective Services in California, contact the Johnson Criminal Law Group to learn what your rights are and to discuss your options. We have reunified many children with their parents and successfully fought to get children placed with family during the reunification process.