Yesterday the Chicago Tribune ran a story about a Federal lawsuit filed against the Department of Children and Family Servies and two employees involved in making sure that AJ Freund, murdered in his home, was safe, Carlos Acosta and his supersvisor, Andrew Polovin.
Today Dahleen Glanton writes a column entitled:
Maybe it’s time to hold Illinois child welfare workers criminally lilable when children under their supervision are killed
Under the headline is a photo of Acosta at the latest McHenry County Board meeting, where he is a Democratic Party member.
Referencing the Federal suit, columnist Dahleen Glanton writes,
“…if the allegations in a federal lawsuit filed this week on behalf of AJ’s three siblings are true, maybe the parents aren’t the only ones who should be subject to criminal charges.
AJ’s case raises the question of whether the professionals who are responsible for monitoring the well-being of children under the supervision of the Department of Children and Family Services should be held to the same legal standards.”
“The Illinois inspector general office investigated 98 deaths last year involving children who were under DCFS supervision.
“Eighteen were classified as homicides, 26 were listed as undetermined, and the others were a combination of accidents and natural causes.
“Over the last 10 years, 986 children have died.”
Other states have criminal penalities:
“A former child welfare worker and his supervisor were indicted on charges of criminally negligent homicide in New York City in 2011.
“The welfare worker pleaded guilty to misdemeanor counts of falsifying business records, official misconduct, endangering the welfare of a child and disorderly conduct. His supervisor pleaded guilty to misdemeanor endangering the welfare of a child and disorderly conduct. Both were sentenced to community service.”
In Illinois, such a guilty plea would allow the employees to keep their pensions.
The column also reports a criminal case in California where one judge said, “the boy’s death was ‘foreseeable’ and that there were ‘red flags everywhere.’”
Also included are the “glaring mistakes” DCFS made in AJ’s situation.