Former C & Y director pleads guilty to child danger and obstruction

Harrisburg — Former Luzerne County Child and Adolescent Director Joan Van Thorne did not investigate hundreds of reports of child abuse and neglect, and the dangers of children associated with covering the case with false reports. And pleaded guilty to obstruction.

Van Thorne pleaded guilty to Dauphin County Judge Scott Evans earlier Thursday for two counts, a single count and a sabotage of endangering the welfare of children. The sentencing trial will be held at a later date.

Van Saun, 58, in Dallas, remains free with $ 100,000 on unsecured bail.

“Josh Shapiro has violated the law and her obligations to protect our most vulnerable people by blinding them to the abuse and negligence of their children. We are in Pennsylvania. If you call Childline, youths are at risk, taking your report seriously and accusing those who couldn’t take responsibility, “Josh Shapiro, the Attorney General, said in a news release.

Van Thorne was investigated by the Attorney General’s Office and charged in Dauphin County.

According to court records, Van Thorne mistakenly terminated reports of child abuse and neglect and instructed employees to put dozens of Luzerne County children at risk of further harm in July. I was charged.

Investigators determined that in May 2017 Van Saun instructed employees to end at least 217 reports of child abuse and neglect received from the state’s childline system. These cases were part of the backlog first reported by the news media in May 2017.

Childline is part of a mandatory state-wide child protection service program that receives reports and sends them to the appropriate agencies for investigation.

Luzerne County had 1,388 open referrals, which accounted for 75% of the state’s open childline referrals, Shapiro said when Van Saun was indicted.

According to court records, some reports terminated by Van Saun without investigation are: The child wore dirty clothes and went to school and begged for food. An oven used to warm a dwelling where dog droppings are scattered. The mother threw a lit cigarette out of the car window and re-entered the car to burn her child’s face. A dwelling with no food, no refrigerator, no stove, and rat and dog droppings.

Van Saun encourages employees to eradicate the backlog by sending a false computer report to ChildLine that the referral is not worth investigating, instead of spending the appropriate amount of time evaluating or investigating each ChildLine referral. I instructed. This is called “screening out”.

Shapiro said in May 2017 that 217 screenouts were submitted by Children & Youth clerks who did not have the legal authority or proper training to make these decisions.

Former C & Y director pleads guilty to child danger and obstruction

Source link Former C & Y director pleads guilty to child danger and obstruction

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