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Child Advocate Attorneys Sue Florida DCF on Behalf of Boy Knifed by Pedophile Father, Suit Claims Agency Knew Potential for Harm

September 24th, 2013   No Comments   Abuse, Court Cases

In a violent, murderous rampage that one local newspaper called a “bloodbath,” a child was left with a knife embedded in his skull, his autistic brother and a stranger killed – and his pedophile father and perpetrator of the violence dead of suicide. The Florida Department of Children and Families could have predicted the 2012 outburst, given the man’s history of physical abuse and sexual abuse against his children.

The boy’s child advocate attorneys, Howard Talenfeld and Joel Fass, both shareholders with Fort Lauderdale law firm Colodny, Fass, Talenfeld, Karlinsky, Abate & Webb, filed suit in Broward County Circuit Court Monday, the Miami Herald reported today.

The lawsuit claims the 2012 event at the Deerfield Beach trailer park resulted from the state returning the boy to his parents. The agency already had removed the boys from the care of the parents, who had been accused by several sources of repeatedly molesting the boy, despite growing evidence and reports the boy was terrified of his parents. A half-brother reportedly even warned agency officials of the man’s sexual assaults on him when the man lived in New York.

Following the rampage, a DCF report found that the agency acted correctly and legally had to return the boys to their parents, the Herald reported.

Attorneys disagree, the paper notes, reporting that “[t]he lawsuit says the department overlooked a mountain of warning signs that the boys would never be safe with his parents.”

The event highlights the agency’s pattern of ignoring reported cases of abuse, putting children back in harm’s way with violent, even sexually abusive settings, and then whitewashing the facts when events turn horribly wrong, attorneys say.

“This is one of the most egregious cases in DCF history,” Talenfeld told the Herald. “Instead of learning valuable lessons that may have prevented one or more of the recent deaths, DCF whitewashed their reviews of this case.”

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