Adoptive Father Faces Excess Force Charge

Date: 1991-06-06
Source: nytimes.com

Adoptive Father Faces Excess Force Charge

June 6, 1991

The Harlem man who is charged with sexually abusing one of the 35 children he adopted will also be accused of using excessive corporal punishment on the teen-ager, a lawyer for New York City's Human Resources Administration said in a court hearing yesterday.

The lawyer, Maria Peralta, told Judge Edward M. Kaufmann in Manhattan Family Court that a report from Bellevue Hospital, where the girl was examined, will be introduced to support the punishment charge.

The 51-year-old father, Kodzo Dobosu, who has been nationally honored for adopting hard-to-place children over the last 20 years, denied the new accusation, as well as the charge of sexual abuse, his lawyer said.

Mr. Dobosu, who ran Ohio's special adoptions program from 1984 to 1988, now lives in a brownstone on 139th Street with 17 of his adopted children.

Monica Drinane, a Legal Aid Society lawyer appointed to represent the children, told the court that physical conditions have improved since last week, when she said the home reeked of urine and had no sheets, poor lighting, few if any window guards and little food.

Still, Judge Kaufmann refused to reconsider his order that homemakers be present in Mr. Dobosu's home around the clock, both to help care for the children and to protect them in case the charges are found to be true.

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