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It is difficult to ascertain the exact scale of sexual abuse in foster care, it cannot be disputed that it occurs and with a frequency which makes surprising the lack of detailed study.
Arizona CPS News Archive
Arizona News Coverage
Supreme Court Rules School's Strip Search of Girl Was Illegal
The Supreme Court ruled today that Arizona school officials violated the constitutional rights of a 13-year-old girl when they subjected her to a strip search.
The court ruled 8-1 that such an intrusive search without the threat of a clear danger to other students violated the Constitution's protections against unreasonable search or seizure.
The Washington Post
June 25, 2009
Dad of toddlers left home alone shocked by ex's actions
MESA, AZ - Family members say two toddlers left home alone on Sunday in deplorable conditions are now happy, clean and safe.
"When I grabbed him in my arms it was a big sigh of relief," said William Schiminski, the father of both boys, who now has custody. Their mother was arrested on child endangerment and neglect charges after police say she left the 2 and 3-year-old children in the home with little food, and "feces and urine stains all over the floor in the children's bedroom."
ABC News 15
June 24, 2009
Corporal punishment of special education students crosses the line to child abuse
Mentions of being paddled at school or having a corporal punishment policy tend to conjure up mental images of one room school-houses and boys in suspenders who were caught putting a frog in the lunch pail of a little girl with pigtails.
In fact, many parents are confounded to find out that their state actually allows children in public schools to be spanked by teachers and administrators. While Illinois has outlawed corporal punishment since 1993, there are still 22 states that still permit paddling, with only three have laws that restrict that use (AZ, OH, UT).
Chicago Special Education Examiner
June 10, 2009
GAO report on abuse of disabled kids in schools
The US Government Accountability Office released a report detailing hundreds of cases of abuse against children in treatment centers and public and private schools. Shockingly, many of these actions are not illegal under Arizona law.
The fear of a trusted caregiver abusing our kids is one of the worst nightmares any parent - or concerned uncle - could have. It's even worse for a child with severe disabilities who may not be able to tell his parents about the abuse or even understand what is happening.
Phoenix Special Needs Kids Examiner
May 29, 2009
Marijuana Policy Project hires Riester for campaign
Marijuana Policy Project hired the Riester advertising and communications firm to spearhead a 2010 ballot measure to legalize the medical use of marijuana in Arizona.
The proposed voter initiative would make possession of up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana legal for severely ill patients who have a doctor's recommendation. The measure also would create dispensaries for the drug, but people without access to the locations could grow their own.
Phoenix Business Journal
May 14, 2009
Faces of foster care
"I've been through at least 27 different families moving basically like a daily basis. I'm pretty used to it now." 27 different families in Travis' 12 short years.
Travis has been in foster care since birth. He says moving from home to home was tough at first, but now it's easier. "You kind of start getting used to it and you start getting less nervous."
KOLD News 13
May 2, 2009
Area woman gets probation in child abuse case
Melanie Gamble, who with her husband had been charged with attempted first-degree murder of her 8-month-old daughter, was sentenced to seven years of probation Tuesday on one felony charge of child abuse.
Melanie Gamble must comply with a state Child Protective Services case plan for her child, attend parenting classes and maintain employment. Gregory Gamble will be sentenced later this month.
May 1, 2009
CASA For Kids: 'Derrick'
Child Protective Services (CPS) removed Derrick from his parents' care after his mother was incarcerated because of substance abuse and domestic violence.
At the present time, a great need exists for CASA volunteers - particularly men - who are willing to work with pre-teen and teenage males, as many volunteers prefer cases involving younger children.
The Daily Courier
April 5, 2009
Strip-Search Case Tests How Far Schools Can Go
SAFFORD -- Savana Redding still remembers the clothes she had on - black stretch pants with butterfly patches and a pink T-shirt - the day school officials here forced her to strip six years ago. She was 13 and in eighth grade.
Savana Redding, 19, was strip searched six years ago when teachers suspected she had brought prescription pills to school. An assistant principal, enforcing the school's antidrug policies, suspected her of having brought prescription-strength ibuprofen pills to school. One of the pills is as strong as two Advils.
The New York Times (AZ)
March 23, 2009
Grandparents, family members protest cuts to state assistance
Grandparents and other family members raising children took to the streets Friday to protest state budget cuts they say are hurting their kids.
About 100 caregivers and children delivered 250 petitions, demanding that legislators restore 20 percent cuts in aid to families caring for the children of relatives. The cuts, made by state legislators last month, impact more than 10,000 Arizona children, according to organizers.
March 20, 2009
Biologists capture, collar and release mountain lion on Kofa NWR
The Arizona Game and Fish Department captured, collared, and released a male mountain lion as part of the continued effort to actively monitor the effects of mountain lion predation on the historic bighorn sheep herd on the refuge.
Biologists who snared the animal field aged it at four years old, weighing 109 pounds, and reported it was in good health at the time of the release in the area near the Kofa Mountains. The animal is fitted with a satellite collar carrying the identification KM04. Early tracking data suggests the animal is back to its normal activities.
Arizona Game and Fish Department
March 12, 2009
9,000 at DES will be placed on unpaid leave
Despite rising demand for unemployment benefits and food stamps, the Department of Economic Security on Thursday announced furloughs for 9,000 employees and said "a significant number" of layoffs are imminent.
The department, which oversees agencies including Child Protective Services, the food-stamp program and child-support enforcement, previously reduced overtime and travel expenses. But it wasn't enough to avoid steep cuts.
The Arizona Republic
February 13, 2009
Confession by boy in dual killing is set aside
Confession by boy in dual killing is set aside, Prosecutors in the double-murder case against a 9-year-old St. Johns boy have agreed to throw out the child's confession.
Bennett, the University of Arizona professor, was among several experts Tuesday who criticized efforts to prosecute the child as an adult. Even if the boy committed the offense, he said, the state should be trying to figure out why he did it and how to help him.
The Arizona Republic
January 7, 2009
Program for children, families will focus on prevention
Infants and toddlers in foster care face far greater risks to their healthy development and future well being than older children in foster care and even babies living in poverty.
The Yavapai Regional Partnership Council will fund a nurse home visitation program for infants and toddlers in foster care to address the complicated and serious physical, mental health and developmental problems experienced by young children in foster care. Funding will also support a Court Team...
Chino Valley Review
December 30, 2008
From grave, abused girl inspires man
From grave, abused girl inspires man, Five months ago, a little girl reached out from the grave and grabbed a stranger by the heart.
Child Protective Services had long since lost track of them, and their school showed an appalling lack of curiosity as to why one sister was showing up with black eyes while the other suddenly disappeared. They surfaced a year ago this week, when Trenay was found dead on her bedroom floor and her sister was found cowering in the bathtub, covered in bruises and burns and other injuries.
The Arizona Republic
November 8, 2008
Former foster children gather for reunion
Hundreds of former foster care children in Tucson are finding new ways to reconnect. It's part of a nationwide push by the foster care alumni of America.
A former foster child, Lupe Tovar started the Foster Care Alumni organization in Tucson. This family reunion was held to highlight the need for foster care support in the community. It's part of a nationwide push to help foster kids live better lives.
KOLD 13 News (AZ)
September 20, 2008
Housemate gets 10 years in fatal abuse of autistic boy | Brandon Williams, 5
Flower Tompson, 28, was sentenced Tuesday to 10 years in prison on one count of felony child abuse for failing to stop the abuse of Brandon Williams, 5, who died March 21, 2007 at a local hospital.
His body was covered with dozens of marks, indicating various stages of healing injuries. An autopsy showed he died of multiple skull fractures, which led to bleeding in the brain and respiratory arrest. At the time of the boy's death, Marsh and her common-law husband, Mark Lee Moss, had been living with Tompson for months. Moss was not charged in the case.
September 17, 2008
Cops: 9-year-old boy kept in closet
Pima County sheriff's deputies have arrested a Tucson couple and charged them with child abuse after discovering they were keeping a 9-year-old boy in a closet in their home, a sheriff's spokeswoman said.
The boy, who is nearly 10, weighs 48 pounds, appears pale, cannot read or write and did not attend school, said Deputy Dawn Hanke. He and his brother, 8, were removed from the home by the state's Child Protective Services and are in state custody.
September 5, 2008
Former Arizona CPS worker sentenced to 2 years probation
Police say the worker gave the child back to biological family, knowing they intended to take the child to Mexico.
A former contract worker for Arizona's Child Protective Services Department was sentenced to 2 years probation on Wednesday for custodial interference.
ABC 15 News
August 20, 2008
Napolitano signs bill allowing access to child-welfare cases
The governor signed into law Tuesday a package of bills that will give the public and the media unprecedented access to records in child-welfare cases and state employee files.
The bills were crafted in the wake of legislative hearings on the deaths of three Tucson children involved with the state's Child Protective Services agency. The new laws make some court proceedings, CPS case records and employee disciplinary records available to the public.
The Arizona Republic
June 22, 2008
Alaska police arrest man wanted in Ariz. child-exploitation case
A man wanted in a child-exploitation case in northern Arizona was arrested Friday in Alaska, authorities said.
The Coconino County Sheriff's Office said Richard J. Rush, 48, was arrested by Alaskan state police in Talkeetna, about 100 miles north of Anchorage.
The Arizona Republic
May 10, 2008
Texas officials drafting plans for FLDS children
Texas child welfare authorities have begun drafting service plans for the children taken from the Fundamentalist LDS Church's YFZ Ranch.
"It's the plan that has to address the permanency," said Mary Walker, a spokeswoman for the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services. "Whether or not children will be unified with their parents or whether or not they will remain in foster care."
May 8, 2008
CPS files still closed as more queries raised
Need another reason why the Arizona Legislature needs to pry open a few of those lead-lined windows that allow Child Protective Services to protect itself from the prying eyes of outsiders? Two words: Dave Wigton.
For nearly 30 years, Wigton has worked at the agency whose only job is to protect children. Then last week, he was accused of turning a little girl into his own personal sex toy and, as a bonus, sharing kiddie porn with a teenage boy.
The Arizona Republic
May 7, 2008
Was School Strip-Search Legal?
Case Pits Students' Privacy Rights vs. Need to Keep Drugs, Weapons Out of Schools
A student strip-searched for drugs when she was in eighth grade took her case to a federal appeals court on Wednesday, arguing through a lawyer that school officials had violated her constitutional rights by overzealously enforcing a strict policy against alcohol, narcotics - and, in her case, Ibuprofen.
ABC News (A)
March 28, 2008
Mother of Payne kids files suit over deaths
The mother of two children who died in the custody of their father has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Child Protective Services asking for unspecified damages.
Four-year-old Ariana Payne's body was found at a Tucson storage facility Feb. 18, 2007. Because her 5-year-old brother Tyler was never found, authorities presume him to be dead.
Tucson Citizen (AZ)
March 22, 2008
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