Most recent abuse cases

This archive contains cases of abuse of children within the child placement system.

Some of the these children have been killed, other's survived but suffered from:

In several cases the abuse was hidden from authorities under the pretext of homeschooling.

For an overview of abuse cases by location, see this map.

To make this list as complete as possible we can use your help. If you know of cases not covered, or know of articles not listed with the cases, please subscribe to this group and help maintain this section of the website or send links and articles to this mail address.

18 Children in care of Tom and Debra Schmitz

 

10 children adopted by/in legal custody of and 7 children illegally in the "care" of Tom and Debbie Schmitz were abused by their adopters (they also had 1 bio child). For years the Schmitzes took in disabled and otherwise troubled children in their home and were part of an under-ground network of people taking in children from disrupted adoptions. As adherents of Attachment Therapy, they beat their children, locked them up in cagelike bunk beds, forcing one child to eat his own vomit; holding another child's head underwater as punishment; sitting on a girl and urinating on her; and hurling a wheelchair-bound girl into a swimming pool; placing a hose in a girl's mouth and turning on the water, and lancing a boil on another child with a box cutter as she screamed in pain; forcing children to dig what they were told were their own graves.

Seven children in the "care" of Tom and Debra Schmitz were illegally placed. At least: 2 were from China, 2 from Russia, 1 from Vietnam and 1 from Mexico.

Debra pleaded no contest to 14 counts of child abuse and one count of trafficking. She was sentenced to six months in jail and probation. Tom Schmitz case has been expunged. The Schmitz are now divorced.
Date: 2004-06-30
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Non-lethal deprivation
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother
Disabilities: yes
Home schooling: yes

Location

Trenton, Tennessee
United States
See map: Google Maps

Children at Kerelaw Residential School



Residential school in Scotland where "common assaults", "emotional abuse", neglect and poor practice were daily routine.
Date: 2004-06-18
Placement type: Institution
Institution: Kerelaw Residential School
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Sexual abuse, Non-lethal neglect
Abuser: Other non-family member

Location

Stevenston, North Ayrshire
United Kingdom

Girl in foster care with Arthur and Lori Allain

10-year-old girl in foster care with Arthur and Lori Allain was locked in her bedroom for months allowed to eat only a spoonful of food. The Allain's were convicted and received 25 years imprisonment. In August 2009 Florida DHS settled the case for $4 million.
Date: 2004-05-18
Placement type: Foster care
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Non-lethal neglect
Abuser: Foster father, Foster mother

Location

Brooksville, Florida
United States
See map: Google Maps

Brittany Legler



15-year-old girl adopted by Lisa M. Iarussi, died of physical abuse at the hands of her adopter. More than 200 injuries covered the mentally disabled 14-year-old girl's body — 82 of them "fresh," and 130 up to two and a half to three weeks old.Older injuries included a healed broken rib, a cauliflower ear from repeated injury, and lips so scarred that the muscles were starting to degenerate.
Date: 2004-05-09
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Adoptive mother

Placement

Organizations: Erie County Office of Children and Youth

Location

Erie, Pennsylvania
United States
See map: Google Maps

Mia Depaillat

21-month-old girl, adopted from China at 9 months by french-born Christophe and Jill Ellen Depaillat, died of fatal injuries. Jill Ellen Depaillat was indicted on charges of malice murder, felony murder and aggravated battery. Jill said she dropped Mia and the toddler fell down the stairs.  Mia had injuries consistent with shaken baby, as well as damage to her intestines. A mistrial was declared in her case due to a hung jury, so guilt was never decided.

Mia was small (21 lbs) and developmentally delayed at her death. Depaillat had 2 school age sons and a 16 month old son who would have been 4 months old when Mia was adopted.
Date: 2004-04-16
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Adoptive mother
Disabilities: yes

Location

Cumming, Georgia
United States
See map: Google Maps

Tyler Vanpopering



6-month-old boy about to be adopted by Leonard and Carissa Columbus. On 11 April 2004, they brought Tyler to the emergency room of Wyandotte Hospital. Four days later later he died from injuries suffered consistent with Shaken Baby Syndrome. On Saturday, April 17, Southgate police broke into the Columbus' home and found the couple dead in their garage of carbon monoxide poisoning. The boy and his sister MacKenzie had been placed with the Columbus' by their 19 yo natural mother who needed a break. She was considering allowing their adoption.
Date: 2004-04-11
Placement type: To be adopted
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Foster father, Foster mother, Undetermined

Placement

Organizations: independent

Location

Detroit, Michigan
United States
See map: Google Maps

Boy adopted by Scott and Catherine Kanani Nelson

7-year-old Samoan boy adopted together with his 3-year-old from sister by Scott and Catherine Kanani Nelson was malnourished, suffered from frostbite and several other injuries. As a form of punishment he was forced to sleep in his underwear in a shed during subzero temperatures. The boy wanted to return to his home in Samoa.
The family had been featured on a Discovery Health Channel's "Adoption Stories" episode from July 4, 2003, Adoption in March 2003
Date: 2004-04-08
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Non-lethal neglect, Non-lethal deprivation
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother

Placement

Organizations: "an out-of-state private agency"

Location

Roy, Utah
United States
See map: Google Maps

Riley Owen Bilke

Riley Owne Bilke died April 3, 2004 from symptoms associated with shaken baby syndrome: brain hemorrhaging, retinal hemorrhaging, and brain swelling. His father,Todd Dittberner, who had a past non-violent criminal record, was charged with first-degree reckless homicide. Riley's mother was not charged. Dittberner was acquitted.
Date: 2004-04-03
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Adoptive father

Location

Watertown, Wisconsin
United States
See map: Google Maps

Gustavo Adolpho Hunt

Gus, 7 month old boy adopted from Guatemala by Steven D. Showcatally and Gail Hunt was dropped to the floor by his adoptive father and died three hours later. Gustavo was adopted 4 months earlier in Nov. Father is serving 12.5 years. Parents attempted to complete a pending adoption in India shortly after Gustavo's death.
Date: 2004-03-19
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Adoptive father

Location

St Paul, Minnesota
United States
See map: Google Maps

Eduardo Calzada

4-month-old boy in foster care with Kathy Jean Scott was beaten to death.
Date: 2004-03-08
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Foster mother

Location

Bakersfield, California
United States
See map: Google Maps

Children adopted by Mercury Liggins



Liggins' children, ranging in age from 8 to 17, were discovered a month ago at the Nigerian orphanage by an American missionary. The children, some of them suffering from typhoid and malaria, told the missionary they were from Houston and wanted to go home. The church's pastor told two U.S. congressmen and arrangements were made to return them to Texas.

Liggins said her only mistake was trusting her brother-in-law to care for the children in Nigeria. The relative took money she sent for the kids' benefit, causing the children to be kicked out of their boarding school and put in the squalid orphanage, she said.

The children, adopted from US foster care, initially were taken to Nigeria in October so she could take a job in Iraq, working for Houston-based Hallilburton subsidiary KBR.
Date: 2004-03-01
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal neglect
Abuser: Adoptive mother

Homestudy

Organizations: Spaulding for Children

Location

Houston, Texas
United States
See map: Google Maps

Haley Liberman

7-year-old girl, adopted by Debra Liberman  and Dan Liberman was severely abused by her adoptive mother. She had bleach poured her back, was beaten her with a dog chain, had  cat food and salt forced down her throat and was locked in a coal cellar, and then a closet.
Date: 2004-02-09
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Non-lethal deprivation
Abuser: Adoptive mother

Location

Carrick, Pennsylvania
United States
See map: Google Maps

Jada Chatmon

As the youngest of two children adopted by Audrey Chatmon, Jada D. was repeatedly submerged in scalding water, causing second- and third-degree burns. She was also hit with a belt, pulled her hair, hit in the face and body, scratched and burned her with fire. Her older sister was Faith D.

Audrey Chatmon was arrested in 2004, convicted of child abuse and sentenced to 15 years in state prison.
Date: 2004-02-06
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Adoptive mother

Homestudy

Organizations: Department of Children and Family California

Placement

Organizations: Penny Lane Centers

Location

Los Angeles County, California
United States
See map: Google Maps

Girl adopted by Stephen L and Kathryn A Truex

13-month-old child adopted from China was hospitalized after being shaken by her father, Stephen L Truex
Date: 2004-01-13
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Adoptive father

Location

Lysander, New York
United States
See map: Google Maps

Alex Pavlis (Alexei Vasilovich Geiko)

 
At age 6, Alex Pavlis of Illinois, was beaten to death by his U.S. adopted mother, Irma, 6 weeks after his Novemeber adoption from Yeysk, Krasnodar, Russia. Adoptive father was Dino Pavlis. Alex, who was adopted along with his 5 yr old bio sister, was found to have 32 bruises, scars, and cuts. Irma had a difficult time with Alex. He banged his head on the walls, floors, and defecated and urinated on himself. Reports indicate that his injuries could have been self-inflicted. The children were temporarily homeschooled until a school would be chosen. Irma, a Mexican immigrant, was charged with involuntary manslaughter.
Date: 2003-12-18
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Adoptive mother
Home schooling: yes

Homestudy

Organizations: Baptist Children's Home & Family Services

Facilitators

Placement

Organizations: Yunona USA
Persons: Ivan Jerdev

Location

Schaumburg, Illinois
United States
See map: Google Maps

Ellana Lin

22-month-old girl from China, adopted by Tawainese natives Perry Yu Lin and Dianne Buu Lin, died of blunt-force trauma and had injuries over her entire body. She was adopted 2 months earlier. Dianne Buu Lin was sentences to 15 years. Perry Yu Lin was sentenced to one year of felony probation.
Date: 2003-11-02
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Adoptive mother

Location

Rowland Heights, California
United States
See map: Google Maps

13+ Children in care of Diana Lynn Groves

13 to 16 children, mainly internationally adopted, were neglected by Diana Lyn Groves (aka Diana L. Roll, Diana Graves, Diana Martin, Spike Martin) after she was granted custody of them though private arrangements with the adoptive parents. She bound children with duct tape, beat them with a tennis racket, and disciplined 1 girl by putting her in a clothes dryer.

The 13 children removed in November 2003 included her youngest 2 biological children (16 and 13 years), a 2 year old child adopted at 5 months in Texas, and 10 other children. Six of these children had guardianship papers, 1 did not, and 3 are unknown status. Their ages were: 13, 11, 9, unknown, 9, 9, 7, 6, 1, 4 months. The 7 year old was from Poland. Other children were reported to "look like" they were from Eastern Europe, Ethiopia and Asia. She was previously charged with felony theft in 1989, fraud in 1991 and a felony charge of failure to appear in court in 1992. She allegedly operated under names such as Adoptions By Granny and Loving Choices placement agency. Besides the 3 children in the home in November 2003, there were at least 3 other children placed in the home by guardianship.

It appears she pleaded guilt to felony neglect of a dependent for the 2003 issues. She was apparently released by 2006

In 2006 Ms. Groves took $14,000 from 7 people saying she operated an adoption agency. She was sentenced to 3 years.
Date: 2003-11-01
Placement type: Legal Guardianship
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Non-lethal neglect
Abuser: Adoptive mother, Legal guardian
Disabilities: yes

Location

bloomington, Indiana
United States
See map: Google Maps

Jordan Elizabeth Cain

Jordan "Bean" Cain, 26 lb, three-year-old girl in foster care with Matthew Archer and Janice Schryer Archer (biological aunt) was beaten to death. Matthew Archer was convicted of involuntary manslaughter.
Date: 2003-10-24
Placement type: Foster care
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Foster father

Location

Granville, Illinois
United States
See map: Google Maps

Casey Paul Barrow

Casey Barrow, 18 months, died after his foster mother dropped, shook, and threw him. He and his 5 year old sister Caylee, members of the Ute Tribe, were placed in the same foster home to be near their bio mother. The Ute Tribe was pursuing custody as well. Jeanette Ilene Gomez, foster mother, pleaded guilty to lesser charge of child abuse homicide and is sentenced to 1-15 years. Caylee has been  returned to her bio mother and grandmother.
Date: 2003-10-22
Placement type: Foster care
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Foster mother

Placement

Organizations: Utah DCFS

Location

West Valley city, Utah
United States
See map: Google Maps

Liam Thompson (Dmitry Sergeyvich Islankulov)


Liam Thompson: age 36 months, of Columbus, Ohio, died from scalding and neglect. His adoptive father, Gary, placed him in a tub of 140 degree water. He recieved 2nd and 3rd degree burns. His LPN adoptive mother, Amy, neglected treatment for 2 days, then treated him with Tylenol and Vaseline. She took Liam to the hospital only after he went into respitory failure. Amy was sentence to 15 years for child endangering and involuntary manslaughter. Gary received 15-life for murder.
Liam was adopted from Blagoveshensk, Amur, Russia 5 months prior  to his death along with his older bio sister. His sister has a new adoptive home and is doing well. Thompson's also had a 3.5 yr old bio son and a 15 yr old bio daughter of Amy.
Date: 2003-10-13
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse, Lethal neglect
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother

Facilitators

Organizations: AMREX

Placement

Organizations: Tree of Life

Location

Columbus, Ohio
United States
See map: Google Maps

Bruce, Michael, Tyrone and Keith Jackson

   

Four New Jersey boys who had been systematically starved by their adoptive parents, while state child welfare workers, in a bewildering series of errors, failed to make the most basic checks on the children over a dozen years. Bruce(19) was 45 lbs, Keith (14) was 41 lbs, Tyrone (10) was 28lbs,  Michael (9) was  23lbs. The boys were also beaten with brooms, rulers, sticks, shoes and belt buckles. Above is a family photo, a close up of Bruce and Bruce 27 months later.

Vanessa Jackson pleaded guilty to one count of endangering the welfare of a child. The boy's father died of a stroke before being convicted.
Date: 2003-10-10
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Non-lethal neglect, Non-lethal deprivation
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother
Home schooling: yes
Fundamentalist faith: yes

Placement

Organizations: DYFS' Southern Adoption Resource Center

Location

Collinswood, New Jersey
United States
See map: Google Maps

Angelic Rose Clary

3-month-old girl in foster care with Sabrina Stafford died of neglect. Her twin sister Tiffany had barbiturates in her system. Angelic's death was called accidental, although there had been previous complaints against Sabrina Stafford.

Several year later Sabrina Stafford, then going by the name Sabrina Banks, would adopt Lavender Banks, who died from asphyxia and several blunt force injuries. Sabrina Banks was arrested for murder August 5, 2009.
Date: 2003-09-14
Placement type: Foster care
Type of abuse: Lethal neglect
Abuser: Foster mother

Placement

Organizations: California Department of Social Services , Kern County Child Protective Services

Location

Bakersfield, California
United States
See map: Google Maps

Children adopted by Scott Francis

Scott Francis, a 41-year-old Northville, MI man, lived with his two adopted children despite a plea agreement that was supposed to stop him from having unsupervised contact with any child, after his previous conviction on two offenses of fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct.

The registered sex offender was convicted of violating probation, and also was charged with new counts of sexual assault involving an adopted son. A judge's written order had failed to mention the plea agreement that forbade contact with any child, and a probation officer also admitted to failing to enforce the deal.

Date: 2003-08-26
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Sexual abuse
Abuser: Adoptive father

Location

Northville, Michigan
United States
See map: Google Maps

Jessica Albina Hagmann

2 year old girl from Moscow, Russia adopted by Glenn Robert Hagmann and Patrice Lynn Hagmann. Her adoptive mother claimed that she accidentally killed Jessica while trying to stop her from having a tantrum. Patrice Hagmann was sentenced to probation and to 2 suspended 5 year terms.
Date: 2003-08-11
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Adoptive mother

Location

Manassas, Virginia
United States
See map: Google Maps

Terrell Parker

2-year-old boy in foster care with Angela Dozier was beaten to death.
Date: 2003-08-06
Placement type: Foster care
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Foster mother

Location

Buffalo, New York
United States
See map: Google Maps

Girl adopted by Wanda and Bobbie Holmes

Less than 17 year old girl adopted by Wanda and Bobbie Holmes was sexually abused by her 72 year old adoptive father with permission of her adoptive mother.
Date: 2003-08-01
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Sexual abuse
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother

Location

Roxana, Illinois
United States
See map: Google Maps

Stephanie Ramos

8-year-old Stephanie Ramos, a severely disabled child who died in a filthy foster home died when her foster mother didn't seek medical attention. Then the foster mother dumped her body in the trash to avoid discovery
Date: 2003-07-09
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal neglect, Death by unknown cause
Abuser: Foster mother, Undetermined

Placement

Organizations: Variety/Cody Gifford House, by the Association to Benefit Children

Location

Queens, New York
United States
See map: Google Maps

Girl adopted by Earl and Tammy Steidl

8-year-old girl adopted by Earl and Tammy Steidl was sexually abused by her adoptive father, while being physically abused by her adoptive mother. Earl Steidl was sentenced to 20 years in prison.

Date: 2003-06-00
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Sexual abuse
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother

Location

Medina, Ohio
United States
See map: Google Maps

Masha Allen (Mariya Nikolaevna Yashenkova)



Masha Allen was adopted  in 1998 at the age of 5 from Novoshakhtinsk, Rostov, Russia into the US by a single male pedophile, Matthew Mancuso. Masha was sexually abused for five years and also became the subject of child pornography. In 2006 she testified before the House Energy and Commerce Committy. In 2008 the news broke that abuse supposedly had again taken place by Faith Allen/Lynn Ginn, the woman who had adopted her immediately after Masha's "rescue" from Mancuso.
Date: 2003-05-27
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Sexual abuse, Sexual exploitation
Abuser: Adoptive father

Facilitators

Organizations: TJS (Dymtchenko's company)

Location

Plum, Pennsylvania
United States
See map: Google Maps

Boy adopted by Michael and Pat Awada

15 year old boy adopted in Bulgaria, was taken to hospital after being hit with a chair for being out on his bicycle too long. Michael Esau Awada was charged. Patricia Anderson Awada was not charged. Charges were dropped in exchange for counseling.
Date: 2003-05-03
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Adoptive father

Location

Eagan, Minnesota
United States
See map: Google Maps

Deondre Bondieumaitre

16-month-old boy in foster care with his uncle Gregory Joseph was beaten to death.
Date: 2003-04-16
Placement type: Foster care
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Foster father

Location

Miami, Florida
United States
See map: Google Maps

Rufus Young

Rufus Young, (aka Rufus Young Manzie Jr), 4, a foster child, died of a beating by his foster father, Roderick Hall of Detroit, after the boy had soiled himself. "I lost it," Hall told a homicide detective. "I grabbed him, and I hit him in his face and jaw." Hall pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and is serving 20-40 years in prison.
Date: 2003-04-06
Placement type: Foster care
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Foster father

Location

Detroit, Michigan
United States
See map: Google Maps

Connre Dixon

11-year-old girl in foster care with Paul Efaw and his wife was stabbed with a knife. Connre was stabbed five times, lacerating her heart, a lung and her stomach. She died from her injuries. Allegedly Paul Efaw had sexually abused her.
Date: 2003-03-13
Placement type: Foster care
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse, Sexual abuse
Abuser: Foster father

Placement

Organizations: Huron County Job and Family Services

Location

Ridgefield Township, Ohio
United States
See map: Google Maps

Kehaulani Niu Sullivan

4 year old girl adopted by Brian Christopher  and LaRae Marara Sullivan. Claiming to have been ordered by god like a modern day Abraham, Brian Chistopher Sullivan stabbed the girl and his wife with a knife. Both died.
Date: 2003-02-21
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Adoptive father
Fundamentalist faith: yes

Location

West Valley City, Utah
United States
See map: Google Maps

21 Girls adopted by John and Marian DiMaria

 

Marian and John DiMarias, conservative evangelical Christians, adopted 21 girls from third-world countries. The adopted girls were all impaired; most were deaf. In February, 2003, the State of Vermont learned that John DiMaria had been sexually abusing the older girls for years. He was convicted and jailed by the State.

During 1999 - 2003 DiMaria and her husband, John DiMaria, lived in Jericho, VT  and operated the Gypsy Grace Ranch, advertised as "North America's Largest Breeder" of Gypsy horses, an expensive English draft horse. The DiMarias moved to Vermont from Kentucky, where they also operated a horse farm.

In 2002 and 2003, after the DiMarias had exhausted Marian DiMaria's trust fund of over $7 million, they deceived the Mellon Bank in Pennsylvania, a trustee of the adopted girls' trusts, into sending them $168,000 for fictitious expenses. Further investigation revealed that DiMaria had received and spent $96,000 from one adopted victim's trust, and had defrauded the Social Security Administration of approximately $13,000, after she learned that her husband had been sexually abusing the children.

At least 2 girls were born in China, and Ukraine, at least one girl in India, Russia, Brazil, and Bolivia. (1996 they had 8 from: China, Russia, India, Brazil)  - (Olivia, Hannah, Rikki, Tressah, Anya, Elizabeth, + 15 more)
Date: 2003-02-01
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Sexual abuse, Economic exploitation
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother
Fundamentalist faith: yes

Location

Jericho, Vermont
United States
See map: Google Maps

Boys in foster care with Ian Wathey and Craig Faunch

Homosexual couple sexually abuse four children that were placed in foster care with them. Investigations found out social workers were afraid to act upon allegations for fear of being labeled homophobic. The man fostered 18 children in 15 months, having requested boys aged 5 to 12 years old. After the 4th complaint of inappropriate activity, the police became involved.

Wathey was jailed for five years after being convicted of four counts of sexual activity with a child and one offence of causing a child to watch sexual activity.

Faunch received a six-year prison sentence after he was found guilty of five charges of engaging in sexual activity with a child and two of taking indecent photographs of a child.
Date: 2003-01-01
Placement type: Foster care
Type of abuse: Sexual abuse
Abuser: Foster father

Placement

Organizations: Wakefield Council, Yorkshire

Location

Pontefract, Wakefield
United Kingdom

Girl adopted by David and Holly Meyers

4 year old girl adopted as an infant in Russia was molested by her older brother from Romania adopted at age 7. The boy spent his first 2 years tied to an orphanage crib, and was beaten and molested at a state-run orphanage and foster homes. He repeatedly sexually assaulted his sister and threatened to kill her and their mother.
Date: 2003-01-01
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Sexual abuse
Abuser: Adopted sibling

Placement

Organizations: Uniting Families Foundation, (Romanian son placing agency)

Location

zeeland, Michigan
United States
See map: Google Maps

Girl in foster care with Robert Jackson and Janie Jackson

Two girls illegally brought from Guatemala to Florida by their bio father, were placed in foster care with Robert Jackson adn Janie jackson. Both were subjected to sexual abuse by Robert Jackson. The mother called the police when she found him on the girl, but after Jackson's arrest, Janie Jackson drove her to Miami and paid for her ticket to Guatemala, where the girl returned to live with her family... and would be unable to press charges.
Date: 2003-01-01
Placement type: Foster care
Type of abuse: Sexual abuse
Abuser: Foster father

Placement

Organizations: Children's Network of Southwest Florida

Location

San Carlos Park, Florida
United States
See map: Google Maps

Joshua Causey


A Detroit foster mother who had adopted a girl and was set to adopt two boys from Pontiac was charged Friday with first-degree felony murder in the beating death of one of the boys. The foster mother, Lynda Carol Baker, was named in a murder warrant issued late Friday by the Wayne County Prosecutor's Office. She is charged in the death on Tuesday of Joshua Causey, 4, who had been placed in Baker's care in August.
Date: 2003-01-01
Placement type: Foster care
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Foster mother

Location

Detroit`, Michigan
United States
See map: Google Maps

Brian Edgar


9-year-old Brian Edgar, died of asphyxiation after his mouth had been taped shut and something like a sock had been stuffed in it.  According to the coroner, there were signs that Brian had vomited and that he had been bound around the chest with a belt.  In addition, the autopsy showed  Brian had been dead for several hours before being brought to the hospital. There were bruises on his cheeks and old marks on his wrists and ankles, suggesting he probably had been bound with a rope in the past. 

He was punished by his adoptive mother for stealing cookies.

Neil and Christy Edgar, pastors of God's Creation Outreach Ministry were also charged with abusing 3 other adopted children. Christy Edgar was referred to as a prophet, and reportedly claimed God told her to tie up children as a discipline method.

Date: 2002-12-31
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse, Lethal neglect
Abuser: Adoptive mother
Home schooling: yes
Fundamentalist faith: yes

Location

Overland Park, Kansas
United States
See map: Google Maps

Christian Blewitt



Three year old Christian was placed with along with his 2 younger siblings with inexperienced parents Angela and Ian Gay in Nov 2002. Six weeks after placement, Christian was admitted to a hospital then died. He had head injuries and a significant amount of salt in his bloodstream. The initial autopsy listed the cause of death as blunt force trauma.

Gays were initially found guilty of manslaughter. This verdict was overturned based on new medical evidence. At the second trial, they were found not guilty.

News reports of the second trial mention hydrocephalus and "salt diabetes" (Diabetes insipidus). Christian was alleged to have been diagnosed with hydrocephalus at 7 months. The condition was not monitored or disclosed to the Gays or the prior foster parents.

It is unclear if a medical condition, forced salt ingestion, physical abuse, or some combination of the three caused his death.
Date: 2002-12-07
Placement type: To be adopted
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Death by unknown cause
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother, Undetermined

Placement

Organizations: Sandwell Social Services

Location

Bromsgrove, Worcestershire
United Kingdom

Jeffrey Baldwin and his sister

Jeffrey Baldwin at 1 before entering grandparents home age 1     Jeffrey Baldwin undated  undated

In 1998 Jeffrey Baldwin and a sister were placed by Catholic Children's Aid with his maternal grandparents Elva Bottineau and Norman Kidman, who had been convicted of child abuse in 1970 and 1978 respectively. The grandparents had been given custody of 2 other siblings earlier. Jeffrey died 4 years later, after he and his next oldest sister had been starved, beaten, locked in an unheated room and forced to drink from a toilet. Jeffrey was never toilet trained and denied schooling. The 2 other siblings were trained to treat Jeffrey and his sister as 'pigs'. Jeffrey died at age 5 of septic shock from pneumonia complicated by his starvation. He was covered with wounds and weighed 21 lbs; one pound less than he weighed for his 12 month doctor visit.

There were 6 adults and 6 children under age 10 in the home. Bottineau and Kidman used the children as a source of income.  Bottineau and Kidman were convicted of 2nd degree murder and sentenced to 22 and 20 years, respectively.

See also
Children's Aid Society workers should be reined in, critics say
Kevin Libin: Readers detail rarely-seen ugly side of child-protection agencies
Date: 2002-11-30
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Lethal neglect, Lethal deprivation, Economic exploitation
Abuser: Foster father, Foster mother

Placement

Persons: Margarita Quintana

Location

Toronto, Ontario
Canada
See map: Google Maps

Christopher Forder



8-year-old Christopher Forder stricken with pneumonia, heavily bruised and nearing death, only to call 911 after he had dies. Kimberly Ann Forder, Christopher's adoptive mother abused and neglected him to the point of death, never seeking outside medical help as his pneumonia grew worse. Adoptive father Robert Forder was not charged, though he also did not call for help.

Kimberly and Bob Forder homeschooled and home-churched the children. They did not seek modern western health care treatment the children. They told police Christoper's injuries were due to reactive attachment disorder.

In addition to Christopher, who was adopted from Oregon DHS, Forders had 3 adult bio children and 4 adopted or foster children. In 2005, after Christopher's death, they adopted a set of infant triplets from Liberia with the assistance of West African Children Support Network (WACSN). In 2006, the Forders and the 7 remaining minor children moved to Liberia to serve as missionaries. Around the same time, one of their adult bio children was charged with raping another of their adult children.

In December 2007, the 7 adopted children were returned to Washington state from Liberia after Bob Forder had left them at a WACSN orphanage.
Date: 2002-11-22
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Lethal neglect
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother
Home schooling: yes
Fundamentalist faith: yes

Placement

Location

Seabeck, Washington
United States
See map: Google Maps

Jaymaya Auls

2-year-old girl in foster care with Anthony and Arthurlein Holcomb was beaten to death by her foster mother.
Date: 2002-10-26
Placement type: Foster care
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Foster mother

Location

Buffalo, New York
United States
See map: Google Maps

Maria Anastasia Bennett (Anastasia Plotnikova)

  Maria Bennett
2-year old Maria Bennett, adopted by Susan Jane Bennett, died from shaken baby syndrome. Susan Jane Bennett, said that she had tripped while carrying Maria and had dropped her. Medical evidence proved otherwise. Susan Bennett pleaded no contest to 1 count of reckless homicide and was sentenced to 3 years in prison. Maria was adopted from Primorsky Krai, Russia 9 months prior to her death. Maria's older sister, also from Russia is cared for by Bennett family members
Date: 2002-10-23
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Adoptive mother

Placement

Organizations: Focus on Children Utah

Location

Lancaster, Ohio
United States
See map: Google Maps

Yana and Anatoli Kolenda

 

Two 11-year-olds, adopted at age 7 in Russia, by Richard and Gienia Kolenda, died in 2002--nearly five years after their arrival in America. Their adoptive father stabbed them and his wife to death at their home in Westfield, Mass., then fatally shot himself. The Kolenda's were both Polish immigrants, and had financial troubles.

Date: 2002-10-21
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Adoptive father

Location

Westfield, Massachusetts
United States
See map: Google Maps

Sacha Vallée



4-years-old boy adopted by Marie-Claude Vallée, was beaten to death by his adoptive mother’s boyfriend, Éric Grenier. The corpse of the child was covered with 72 bruises. October 21, 2004, Grenier was found guilty of non-premeditated homicide.

Sacha was born in Russia in 1998. He had spent the first year of his life in a Siberian prison where his mother was imprisoned and where she died; the orphanage where he was transferred put him up for adoption. In August 2001, he was placed with Marie-Claude Vallée.
Date: 2002-10-09
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Other non-family member

Location

Verdun, Quebec
Canada
See map: Google Maps

Children adopted by Theresa and Reed Hansen

Theresa and Reed Hansen, of Saratoga Springs, Utah had been accused of felony and misdemeanor charges for withholding food, sometimes for days at a time, from two of their three children adopted from Russia, who were of pre-school age at the time. The abused boy and girl were bio siblings adopted 2 years after the first. All three adoptees were removed from the home in 2002 and have reportedly thrived since in new adoptive homes.
Date: 2002-10-02
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Non-lethal deprivation
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother
Fundamentalist faith: yes

Location

Saratoga Spring, Utah
United States
See map: Google Maps

Boy and girl adopted by Maureen and Michael Culhane

3 and 5 year old learning disabled children adopted in 2001 from Latvia were locked in a room by themselves for 4 hours while the Irish-born immigrant parents went shopping. The home was filthy and determined to be uninhabitable. Both parents were convicted.
The parents had a criminal record from 2000 for locking an 87 year old woman in a home.
Date: 2002-10-01
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal neglect
Abuser: Adoptive father, Adoptive mother

Location

Montvale, New Jersey
United States
See map: Google Maps

Kelsey Hyre

Twenty six month old Kelsey Hyre was permanently paralyzed September 26, 2002. Kelsey and her brother Nathan were adopted from Amur Russia, probably Blagoveshchensk, 8 months earlier when they were 18 and 22 months old. Her spine was severed after her adoptive father Gerald Hyre slammed her on the floor. Adoptive mother, Bonnie Hyre, who was at work at the time, took her to hospital when she came home. Ms. Hyre had previously suspected her husband of abusing both Kelsey and her adoptive brother Nathan, 3, and had taken photos of other injuries, discussed suspicions with co-workers, but after husband's arrest she destroyed pictures and did nothing.

Gerald Hyre was sentenced to 16 years for felonious assault and child abuse. Bonnie Hyre was sentenced to 2 years for permitting child abuse and evidence tampering and served 10 months. Kelsey has been adopted by another couple and is reportedly responding well. Nathan was placed temporarily with Bonnie Hyre's mother, but now Bonnie has custody.
Date: 2002-09-26
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Adoptive father

Homestudy

Organizations: A Child's Waiting

Facilitators

Organizations: AMREX

Location

Akron, Ohio
United States
See map: Google Maps

Pound Pup Legacy