Man Charged In Baby's Death Considered Adoption

Relates to:
Date: 2007-10-04
Source: ketv.com

OMAHA, Neb. -- A man charged in connection with a child's death was considering adopting the child, according to Douglas County Attorney Don Kleine, and Kleine questions why the man was ever allowed to pursue adoption. On Wednesday, Joleet M. Poole, 23, was booked into jail on suspicion of child abuse resulting in death.

Davion Winrow, 1, was taken to the Nebraska Medical Center last week with a critical head injury. He died at the hospital.

Kleine said that after living his whole life in foster care, Davion had recently gone to live with Poole as Poole considered adoption.

"He doesn't appear to have been taken to the hospital for some time," Kleine said of the boy, after studying the injuries doctors reported. "The child was a ward of the state, which means (Health and Human Services) and (Child Protective Services) has custody of the child. The child was with a foster mother, and apparently the defendant was someone they were looking at as a potential prospective adoptive parent."

Kleine said on Thursday that he wants to know why Davion was allowed to stay with Poole, especially considering his violent past. Juvenile court records show that Poole stabbed a boy in 1992. Soon after, his mother's parental rights were terminated.

HHS, contacted by KETV NewsWatch 7, was asked whether it checked Poole's background. A representative declined to comment on the specific case but said that the state performs criminal background checks for all prospective foster and adoptive parents. However, HHS does not check juvenile court records for histories of violence.

If convicted, Poole faces a maximum penalty of 20 years to life in prison. Poole's arraignment is scheduled for Friday morning

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