Report: Texas Caseworkers Didn't Follow Protocols

The Texas inspector general has found that four Child Protective Services workers failed to follow protocols in the case of an 8-year-old girl who died under their watch.

The Office of the Inspector General released the findings Thursday and didn't recommend any disciplinary action, the San Antonio Express-News reported. The office hasn't released the names of the workers involved with Sarah Brasse, who died of untreated appendicitis in 2009.

The report says the employees neglected to perform even basic requirements of their jobs, such as making timely visits or following up on reports of abuse.

"There was no evidence to indicate that any policy violations were to blame for the appendicitis, which is listed as the cause of death," the report states.

But it said the workers' managers complied with policies in their handling of the case. It found no evidence to support claims they might have illegally changed state documents. The agency investigated Sarah's father and stepmother multiple times in the two years before she died. They were ultimately cleared of criminal charges.

The report, the result of a six-month investigation, follows a 2013 story by the newspaper that found in the 48 hours before Sarah's death, two school workers and a Schertz police officer notified Child Protective Services about concerns she was being neglected.

A Child Protective Services manager declined to open up a new investigation or send a caseworker to check on Sarah, who lived with her father when she died. The report stated that the manager followed policy.

Sarah's mother, JoAnne Guerrero, who did not have primary custody, said she read the Texas inspector general report "with a heavy heart."

Texas Department of Family and Protective Services spokesman Patrick Crimmins said the case is closed and no disciplinary action is expected.

"The report was very thorough and we appreciate the input of OIG," Crimmins said in an email. "This case has been extensively reviewed, and DFPS considers the matter closed."

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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