Category Archives: Neglect

FL Women Abuse Special Needs Child

.jpg photo of women accused of abuse of special needs child
Kaderrica Smith, 26 (left), and Alexus Henderson, 19

Day care workers charged after Snapchat video shows taunting, abuse of autistic child

WINTER HAVEN, FL  –  Two child care workers have turned themselves into police after investigators said they were suspected of berating a child with autism in an incident recorded on video, reports CBS affiliate WTSP.

In the video, which was first posted to the social media platform Snapchat, two women who police believe are 26-year-old Kadericca Smith and 19-year-old Alexis Henderson can be seen laughing at the 8-year-old boy inside Our Children’s Academy, in Winter Haven, Florida.

“Chicken, chicken, chicken,” one woman can be heard saying, as the boy comes out from hiding under a desk.

Later, one of the women is seen holding the boy’s arms before apparently swiping his legs from under him.

Police were first made aware of this on Sept. 1 and say in an initial interview, both women “felt they were acting appropriately” and did nothing wrong.  At the time, police hadn’t pressed charges because the Florida Department of Children and Families was still investigating.

Warrants were later issued for the women’s arrest, and they reportedly turned themselves in Friday.

Henderson is charged with child neglect and Smith faces charges of child abuse and battery.  Henderson received bond after being booked into jail, but Smith is being held with bond.

Smith faces charges of child abuse and battery.

Police say the school immediately fired the two women following the incident.  Both also had blocks placed on their certifications so they cannot be employed by other childcare facilities.

The 8-year-old did not require medical attention.

San Antonio Texas Cares For All Children

.jpg photo of area with high Child Abuse
The two-year pilot program will focus on the 78207 zip code.

Program aims to reduce Child Abuse, Neglect

SAN ANTONIO, TX  –  The City of San Antonio approved spending money on a pilot program aimed at reducing the amount of child abuse and neglects cases.

The two-year pilot program will focus on the 78207 zip code, which the state said has the highest number of reports for child abuse in Bexar County.

“You can spot them right away because they’re either quiet or they’re very mean,” said Dolores Sotomayor.  “They’re just rebellious and it’s just anger or hurt that they’re carrying.”

Until two weeks ago, Sotomayor lived in the 78207 zip code.  She has experienced firsthand the dangers of child abuse.  A family member was convicted of sexually assaulting her 14-year-old daughter in 2011.  Sotomayor said they discovered her daughter has been abused when she gave birth to a baby girl.

“It was very difficult, but I had a large support team,” Sotomayor said.

“I believe that making children a priority will be better for the whole city,” said City Council District 5 Councilwoman Shirley Gonzales.

Gonzales pushed for the city to invest $260,000 on the two-year child abuse prevention pilot program.

“It involves a promotion program where we will be training community health workers to go out into the neighborhoods and try to address this issue one-on-one,” Gonzales said.

The program will begin when the new budget starts in October.

FL Toddler Outside All Night In Hurricane Irma

.jpg photo of FL town where toddler was left out in Hurricane Irma
A 19-month-old Toddler was left outside all night as Irma hit town.

Toddler left outside overnight during Irma
looked ‘purple’

JASPER, FL  –  A Florida father is accused of leaving his toddler outside as Tropical Storm Irma slammed into the Jasper neighborhood where he lives, according to WCTV.

Police arrested 36-year-old Angelo Mitchell on Monday;  he has been charged with felony child abuse.

The 19-month-old’s mother called police around 11:30 p.m. Sunday night to report the girl missing.  She told police Mitchell had picked up their daughter from her, then returned to her house a couple of hours later without the child.

Mitchell told officers that he had never picked up the girl, but that she was safe and was probably with a family friend, according to a police report.  According to WCTV, investigators noted during the interview that Mitchell smelled of alcohol.

Police tried to track the girl using dogs, but weren’t able to locate her scent in the storm.

Shortly before noon on Monday, someone in the neighborhood found the girl in the yard of a home roughly 450 yards from her house.  The girl’s skin appeared purple, according to the Hamilton County Sheriff, and authorities believe she was exposed to the storm’s pounding rain and fierce gusts the entire night.

She also had numerous scratches and bug bites on her skin, witnesses told WCTV.  The girl was flown to a hospital in Gainesville for treatment.  She was reportedly released in good health Tuesday.

Mitchell is a convicted felon who spent a year in prison after he was convicted of battery in a domestic violence case, according to The Miami Herald.  Records show he’s had three restraining orders issued against him.

Mitchell was arrested and taken to the Hamilton County Jail.

PA CPS – Not Doing Job But Want Raise

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PA Hotline calls not being answered, CPS workers not doing job, but want a raise.

Auditor general calls ‘State of the Child’ in
Pennsylvania ‘appalling’

The Pennsylvania auditor general says the state’s child welfare system is broken.

“Kids’ lives at risk from unanswered hotline calls”

Eugene DePasquale released a special report Thursday that took aim at the system by the numbers.

“What I found for my ‘State of the Child’ special report is appalling,” DePasquale said.  “I’m talking about wholesale system breakdowns that actually prevent (Children and Youth Services) caseworkers from protecting our children from abuse and neglect.”

Centre County was one of 13 counties DePasquale’s office spent time on, talking with caseworkers, supervisors, administrators and families.

According to the data, the number of child abuse reports made in Centre County has gone up 60 percent over the past two years, from 237 in 2014 to 379 in 2016.  Of those, 33 were substantiated in 2016.

“Children are being horribly abused and neglected in Pennsylvania every day,” DePasquale said in a statement.  “In recent months, we’ve heard of toddlers being kept in cages, newborns left home alone and starving school-age children locked in filthy rooms.  There are heartbreaking stories every week.”

According to the report, more than $1.8 billion was spent on child welfare services in 2016, a year in which 46 kids died and there were another 79 “near-deaths.”  In Centre County, the expenses came to $997,392.

The “State of the Child” report follows another audit DePasquale conducted in 2016 on the ChildLine system used to report child abuse.  That report showed that thousands of calls made to the system were not acted upon.

The new report claims the people doing the responding are inadequately trained, overworked and underpaid, leading to high turnover.

A Centre County case could be part of some increases.  DePasquale noted the change in Child Protective Services Law that took place after the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal, which included expanding the definition of what child abuse is, as well as broadening who is required to report it.

That, he said, has led to more cases to handle, with some workloads jumping from “generally manageable” numbers of 12 to 20 cases at a time to as many as 50 to 75.

According to the New York senate, a bill was passed by that body in January that would limit the number of cases per worker to no more than 15, after the death of a young boy showed a need to lower the number of kids each caseworker was responsible to oversee.  The concern there was that New York caseworkers were supervising over 25 cases.

Centre County’s workload was unavailable. 

Where Were You

.jpg photo of the American Flag and a Bald Eagle
America The Beautiful

September 11, 2001

I will never forget….

We were working at Raytheon, of all places, and the week had started well.  But then every day started well, but none had ever ended the way that day did….

Although a year and a half before when I sat with my Niece and Mother at that 15+foot conference table filled with medical professionals, and they continued to counsel me with their understanding looks and consoling words, and even asking permission to go to a first name basis, as they continued to return to their “evidence” that my Son was no longer alive.  I should let these important people go to help others, that were living human beings.

That day, like this day, I realized those “Medical Professionals” were not the “Good Guys”, wearing white hats, and certainly not Friends of The Lone Ranger, just like these evil humans that did this evil thing to Our Friends and Neighbors.  Which in turn, cost us more than even that, so many of Our Protectors that would never walk in their door after work….

What is wrong with people.

How can anyone delight in seeing, much less hurting someone.

The day was Tuesday, and it was a great day.  At least until the guards were suddenly there, with LOADED M-16s no less….

After a while they brought us a television, and our day went to hell in a handbasket, as we watched Our America The Beautiful as she was attacked.

Later, they asked if we would like to go home to be with Our Families, and everyone of us had seen that these guys who were Our Friends never looked away from that television, just like us, except to cover when tears would begin to fall as rain.  So, it was easy to say “ah we might be able to get a little work in later”, which startled them for only a second, and then we cried together.

But I do know one thing for sure, because we all said it that day:

“I BLEED RED, WHITE, AND BLUE!!!!”