Docstoc

Infant Injury Attorney Oklahoma City

Document Sample
Infant Injury Attorney Oklahoma City Powered By Docstoc
					                  OKLAHOMA DEPARTMENT OF HUMAN SERVICES
                               Sequoyah Memorial Office Building
                                     2400 N Lincoln Blvd.
                                        PO Box 25352
                                   Oklahoma City, OK 73125
                              (405) 521-3646 www.OKDHS.org


                                    December 5, 2008

To Whom It May Concern:

       When a person responsible for a child has been criminally charged with a child’s
death, Oklahoma State Statute, Title 10, 7005-1.9, allows release of certain information
that would otherwise be confidential. The following information is a summary of the
involvement of the Oklahoma Department of Human Services (OKDHS), Child Welfare
(CW), with Ryan Weeks, (DOB November 9, 2004), prior to his death on November 4,
2008. Disclosure of the identity of reporters of abuse, parents or other persons
responsible for the child, other than those criminally charged, is prohibited by law and is
therefore not included in this summary.

        On November 4, 2008, OKDHS CW received a report that three-year-old Ryan
Weeks was at the hospital emergency room with bruises and abrasions. The initial
explanation for the injuries was that Ryan had fallen in the bathtub while in the care of
the mother’s boyfriend, Rocky Allen Moore. Ryan’s injuries included a depressed skull
fracture and traumatic brain injury. Due to the extent of his injuries, Ryan was
transferred to a metro hospital for further care following an examination that revealed
traumatic brain injury, a skull fracture, and multiple bruises and hematomas. Ryan died
later the same day.

       Rocky Allen Moore, live–in boyfriend of Ryan’s mother and father of Ryan’s
youngest sibling, is alleged to be responsible for the head injuries that caused Ryan’s
death. Mr. Moore was charged with Murder in the First Degree on November 6, 2008 in
Beckham County.

        An OKDHS CW investigation into the death of Ryan is in pending status at this
time.

        Ryan and his two siblings were in OKDHS temporary custody and placed in trial
reunification with Mr. Moore and their mother at the time of his death. The siblings were
removed from the home on November 4, 2008 and placed in an OKDHS foster home.

 The following information only details the prior reports, investigations,
recommendations made to the district attorney, dates of Deprived proceedings prior to
Ryan’s death, recommendations submitted at the Deprived proceedings, and rulings of
the Court pertaining to Rocky Moore, Ryan Weeks and other children living in the home.




                                             1
October 26, 2005
        OKDHS CW received a report stating concern that Ryan and his sibling had been
present during a domestic violence incident between Ryan’s mother and biological
father. The mother was reported to have filed a Protective Order regarding the father
and had been in a domestic violence shelter but returned home to the father. Ryan’s
mother was reported to be screaming at the children, who were crying and screaming.
The reporter did not know if the mother was hitting the children. The children were
reported to be dirty and hungry.

      The CW investigation concluded on November 23, 2005 with a finding of
Confirmed-Court Intervention. An Order Placing Temporary Protective Custody was
signed on this date in Custer County, Ordering that temporary protective custody of
Ryan and his sibling be placed with OKDHS.

November 29, 2005
        A Show-Cause hearing was held this date. The Court determined that there was
sufficient cause for the children to remain in OKDHS custody.

December 8, 2005
       A Deprived Petition was filed by the District Attorney in Custer County regarding
Ryan Weeks and his sibling. The Petition was filed as a result of domestic violence
between Ryan’s mother and father. Incidents of domestic violence had occurred in the
presence of one or both of the children. The father had slapped or pushed the mother
on different occasions. The father admitted that he rants, raves, screams and hollers
and has at times hit walls in anger. The father acknowledged that the children were
affected by these displays, yet continued to behave this way. The mother reported that
the father had slapped and pushed her, had broken into her home, choked her and held
a knife to her throat. Further, she stated that he yells and has on one occasion
attempted to strangle her and made a statement that he would slit her throat in front of
the children. The parents had failed to protect the children from exposure to domestic
violence and placed the children at risk of harm when engaging in domestic altercations
in the presence of the children.

       The Petition reflected that on September 16, 2005 the mother obtained a
Protective Order prohibiting Ryan’s father from contacting, harassing, or harming her
and the children. However, the mother had been allowing the father to be around her
and the children despite the Protective Order restrictions. Further, on November 19,
2005, the father showed a CW welfare worker a note written by the mother giving
custody of Ryan to the father. The father alleged the mother had been smoking
marijuana with Ryan’s sibling in the home. The mother indicated she was under duress
when she wrote the statement. The mother indicated that the father entered her
residence on November 19, 2005 with a key and physically assaulted her by choking
her and placing a knife to her throat and threatening to slice her throat and beat her with
a pole. The children were present in the home. At the time of the filing of the Petition the
father was charged in Custer County with Burglary in the First Degree and Domestic
Assault and Battery by Strangulation.



                                             2
February 10, 2006
       OKDHS CW received a report stating that a party was occurring at Ryan’s
mother’s residence. The mother was reported to be smoking marijuana in the presence
of Ryan and his sibling. Several other individuals were reported to be in the home
including a man named Rocky.

        The Report to District Attorney documents that a CW worker went to the home
within three hours of OKDHS receiving the report. The CW worker observed both of the
children in bed asleep. They had on only their diapers. The mother denied that a party
had taken place at her home or that she or anyone else had been smoking marijuana.
The CW worker did not smell any odors. No beer bottles or alcohol of any kind was
seen. The mother introduced “Rocky” as her friend, and stated that they were watching
a movie.

      On February 13, 2006 the CW worker interviewed Ryan’s biological father at the
OKDHS office and he indicated he knew nothing about the party and use of drugs. The
CW worker asked Ryan’s father if he knew Rocky, a friend of Ryan’s mother. He said
Rocky was a “druggie” and knew where he lived.

       On April 5, 2006, the CW investigation concluded with a finding of Services
Recommended. OKDHS recommended that Ryan’s mother and biological father
continue to follow through with services as determined by the Custer County District
Court.

February 22, 2006
       An Adjudicatory Hearing was held this date and Ryan and his sibling were
adjudicated to be deprived. The Court ordered the children to remain in OKDHS custody
with placement continued in the mother’s home, and that OKDHS should look at
whether or not to continue placement of the children at the mother’s home.

      The children were removed from the home on February 28, 2006 as a result of
the mother not following through regarding the charges of domestic violence against
Ryan’s father.

March 22, 2006
       A Dispositional Hearing was held this date and the children were committed to
the care, custody and control of OKDHS with authority to place in an appropriate
placement. The Court ordered the treatment and service plan be approved, adopted
and complied with.




                                           3
May 17, 2006
        A Court Review and Permanency Hearing was held this date. OKDHS
recommended that Ryan and his sibling remain in the custody of OKDHS and to remain
in their current CW non-relative kinship placement. OKDHS requested a review in three
months.

        The Post-Adjudicatory Review Board Review report submitted to the Court for
this review questioned whether permanency planning for the children was being
conducted at the same time the parents were working on a treatment plan.

        The Journal Entry for Review and Permanency reflects that the Court found that
active efforts had been made to reunite the family. The Permanency Plan was to return
to own home and the Concurrent Permanency Plan was Adoption. The Court indicated
a finding of “no change is indicated at this time”. The mother was ordered to provide her
current address. The mother was found to be in Partial Compliance. OKDHS was also
found to be in Compliance.

August 16, 2006
        A Court Review and Permanency Hearing was held this date. OKDHS
recommended that Ryan and his sibling remain in OKDHS custody with authority to
place. OKDHS made the Court aware that the mother was pregnant and the father was
Rocky Moore. On July 11, 2006 the children were moved from the non-relative foster
home to a CW foster family home. OKDHS requested that the Court make a finding that
active efforts failed to reunite and requested a petition be filed to terminate parental
rights. The request was based on the lack of progress on the Individualized Service
Plans. OKDHS requested that visitation cease and that a review be scheduled for three
months.

       The Post-Adjudicatory Review Board recommended that the mother be made
aware of the danger of alcohol to her unborn child. The Board questioned whether
Ryan’s father was making progress on the treatment plan as he was living with a 15
year old.

        The Journal Entry for Review and Permanency reflects that the Court found that
efforts to reunite the family had failed and that reasonable efforts were being made to
secure an alternate permanent placement for the children. The Court ordered that the
children should remain in OKDHS custody in the CW foster family placement. The
Permanency Plan was return to own home and the Concurrent Permanency Plan was
Adoption. The parents were found to be in Non-Compliance. OKDHS was found to be in
compliance.

August 23, 2006
       A hearing was held this date reflects Ryan’s biological father appeared and
voluntarily relinquished his parental rights and consented to adoption.




                                            4
September 1, 2006
      The Custer County District Attorney filed a Petition to Terminate Parental Rights
of Ryan’s mother and the father of Ryan’s oldest sibling.

September 27, 2006
      An Initial Appearance Hearing for termination of parental rights was held. Ryan’s
mother requested a jury trial.

October 11, 2006
         A Court review and Permanency Hearing was held this date. OKDHS
recommended the children remain in OKDHS custody. OKDHS reported that Ryan’s
mother made improvements on her service plan. OKDHS recommended that the State
not dismiss the petition to terminate the parental rights of the mother, but delay on the
jury trial for three months to see if the mother could maintain the level of commitment to
her children. OKDHS requested a review in three months.

      The Court made a finding that efforts to reunite the family had failed. A jury trial
was set for termination of parental rights on November 2 and 3, 2006. The Court
ordered Ryan’s mother not to smoke in her home and to complete a psychological
evaluation to be paid half by OKDHS. The Court ordered that custody of the children
was to remain with OKDHS and the children were to remain in their placement.

December 13, 2006
      A Termination of Parental Rights Hearing was held on this date and the Court
terminated the parental rights of Ryan’s oldest sibling’s father.

January 17, 2007
       A Court Review and Permanency Hearing was held this date. OKDHS
recommended the children remain in custody. Ryan’s mother was reported to have
made significant progress on the Individualized Service Plan. OKDHS recommended
that the Court approve unsupervised visitation and that the children be placed back in
the home after several unsupervised visits had occurred. OKDHS requested a review in
three months.

       The Court found that custody of the children was to remain with OKDHS and in
the foster family placement. The Permanency Plan was to return to mother's home and
the Concurrent Permanency Plan was Adoption. The Court found the mother to be in
Compliance and ordered her to take urinalysis screening by January 19, 2007 at 5:00
p.m.

February 12, 2007
      OKDHS received a report stating that the mother had given birth this date and
Rocky Moore was the father. The infant was reported to be in good health. The mother
was reported to be applying for WIC services.




                                             5
      On February 13, 2007 a CW worker went to Ryan’s mother’s home. She was at
home with her newborn. The CW worker observed the infant sleeping and saw her
undressed. The infant appeared clean and healthy. The mother stated Rocky Moore
was the infant’s father. She stated he was not violent towards her and they wanted to be
together.

       On May 1, 2007 the CW worker attempted to contact Rocky Moore by phone two
times without success. On May 14, 2007 the CW worker spoke with Mr. Moore at the
mother’s home. He had no concerns about the mother’s parenting and described her as
a great mom. He stated that he saw the infant every day and described the infant as
wonderful and a joy to be around.

      A Safety Assessment was completed and the Safety Decision was that the child
was safe and not in immediate danger of serious harm. The CW investigation was
concluded on May 31, 2007 with a finding of Services Not Needed.

February 21, 2007
       A Court Review and Permanency Hearing was held this date. OKDHS
recommended that the mother’s case be transferred to Beckham County. OKDHS
recommended that the reunification process start after the mother had some
unsupervised visitation. The Court was informed that the mother gave birth and that an
investigation was completed and the child was not removed. The CW worker had been
in the home and it was found to be appropriate for the newborn and the other children.
The mother had visited her children regularly and tested negative for drugs.

The Court found that custody of the children was to remain with OKDHS and in their
current placement.

May 25, 2007
        A Court Review and Permanency Hearing were held this date in Beckham
County after the case was transferred from Custer County. OKDHS reported that the
mother had completed her treatment plan. Comprehensive Home Based Services had
been in the home since May 9, 2007. The mother had been having unsupervised visits
with the children every weekend since May 4, 2007. OKDHS recommended trial
reunification with the mother. OKDHS recommended that Rocky Moore be allowed to be
present in the home at any time due to his clean background check and limited Child
Welfare history. OKDHS requested a six-month review.

      The Court Minute for Review reflects that the Court found that the children were
to remain in OKDHS custody. Things are going well. Children are to be placed back in
the home today. Mr. Moore can be present in the home. Ryan and his sibling were
placed in the home of the mother for Trial Reunification on May 25, 2007.

September 4, 2007
       OKDHS received a report stating that law enforcement had conducted an
investigation of drug charges and child neglect at the apartment of Ryan’s mother on



                                           6
September 3, 2007. The mother, Rocky Moore and other individuals were reported to
be at the apartment. Mr. Moore left the residence but was located in a vehicle and was
placed under arrest.

       On September 3, 2007 an officer went to Ryan’s mother’s apartment and the
mother provided the officer with permission to enter the residence. The mother and two
other subjects were at the residence. The two subjects were holding children and two
other small children were running around. The residence was found to be in complete
disarray. The officer noticed a strong odor associated with burnt marijuana.

       The mother told the officer that when she got home she smelled marijuana but
didn’t want to say that, because she just got her kids back from OKDHS and didn’t want
to loose them again. She said Rocky was watching the children while she was at work
and she thought he and his friends had been smoking. She denied knowing that Rocky
and his friends smoke marijuana.

       The officer on the scene spoke with a CW worker who indicated CW would
follow-up with an investigation and requested that a copy of the report be sent to
OKDHS. The CW worker asked the officer at the scene to have the mother and Rocky
Moore take a drug test and the officer made these arrangements. The report was
received on September 4, 2007.

       Mr. Moore told an officer on this date that he smoked a joint outside of the
apartment and left the door open. The children were in the bedroom during this time. He
stated that the mother was at home when this occurred. When asked where he got the
marijuana he said he found it.

       On September 4, 2007 the CW worker spoke with Ryan’s mother by phone and
informed her that she was not to leave the children alone with Mr. Moore. The CW
worker attempted to contact the mother again on September 6, 2007 and it was
reported she was staying in another city with Rocky Moore.

       On September 7, 2007 a CW worker attempted a home visit to the home of the
mother. The mother’s vehicle was parked in front of the apartment but she did not
answer the door. The mother contacted the CW worker on September 8, 2007 and the
CW worker informed her that she needed to return to her home and that Mr. Moore
could no longer be around the children.

        On September 12, 2007 a CW worker made contact with Ryan and his siblings in
the home. All of the children were sitting on the couch watching a movie except for
Ryan who was asleep. Ryan began screaming when his oldest sibling threw a temper
tantrum that awakened him and kicked Ryan in the leg. Ryan cried and sought comfort
from his mother. Ryan later hugged the CW worker but did not talk. Ryan’s youngest
sibling was described as being developmentally appropriate for age.




                                           7
       While the CW worker was at the home the police arrived to arrest Ryan’s mother
on an outstanding warrant for child neglect. Ryan’s mother called Mr. Moore and
informed him that she was being arrested and OKDHS was taking the children. Mr.
Moore then came to Ryan’s mother's home. Mr. Moore was then informed that there
was a warrant for his arrest as well and was arrested. Ryan’s mother and Mr. Moore
were then arrested and were transported to jail. Ryan and his two siblings were
removed from the home.

        On September 12, 2007 an Order for Temporary Custody regarding Ryan’s
youngest sibling was issued, stating the child to be in need of the immediate protection.
The Court ordered that the child would be released from custody if a Petition was not
filed on or before September 19, 2007. A Show- Cause hearing was scheduled for
September 13, 2007.

        On September 13, 2007 the CW worker made contact with Mr. Moore while he
was in police custody. Mr. Moore stated he was in jail because on September 3, 2007
he was outside Ryan’s mother’s apartment smoking marijuana. Mr. Moore stated the
children were asleep in the bedroom. Mr. Moore stated he smoked marijuana two to
three times a week at the apartment when the children were present but only when
Ryan’s mother was gone. The CW worker explained to Mr. Moore that his child was in
OKDHS custody and that Court ordered services would have to be completed in order
to regain custody.

       Mr. Moore said he and Ryan’s mother used to fight a lot before the boys came
home but now only argue two to three times a week. Mr. Moore denied any physical
altercations in front of the children. Mr. Moore did admit the children had seen them
argue and curse at one another. Mr. Moore stated he believes the reason he and the
children’s mother fight all the time is because he is always high. Mr. Moore stated that
he loves the children and thinks of Ryan as his own. Mr. Moore offered to go to inpatient
substance abuse treatment.

       On September 13, 2007 the CW worker interviewed Ryan’s mother while she
was in police custody. She stated she didn’t know anything about Mr. Moore smoking
marijuana in the home and would not allow him to live in the home. The CW worker
informed the mother that she would need to continue with counseling and that she and
Mr. Moore would have to complete a treatment plan.

        On September 13, 2007 a Request for Termination of Trial Reunification was
filed in Beckham County. In addition to the information previously received during the
investigation, the Request noted that while the children were being transported to foster
care Ryan and his oldest sibling provided the CW worker with information that indicates
that they had observed Rocky Moore and their mother smoking “weed” at the
apartment. The oldest sibling indicated that Rocky made the child smoke “weed” and
drink and caused the child to throw up.




                                            8
      On September 13, 2007 a hearing was held regarding the Request for
Termination of Trial Reunification. The Court issued an Order Terminating Trial
Reunification and authorized removal of Ryan and his oldest sibling from the home.

      On September 14, 2007 an Emergency Custody Hearing was held regarding
Ryan’s youngest sibling. The parents named were Ryan’s mother and Rocky Moore.
The child was placed in OKDHS temporary custody.

        On September 14, 2007 the CW worker interviewed the Comprehensive Home
Based Services (CHBS) worker. The CHBS worker stated she had been in the home
once a week since May 9, 2007. Mr. Moore was not usually in the home during the
visits. The CHBS worker had been in the home on September 4th and 12th, 2007 and did
not see any issues.

        On September 14, 2007 the CW worker interviewed an individual that stated Mr.
Moore didn’t like watching the children while the mother worked. This person stated that
Ryan’s mother and Mr. Moore fight a lot and it was usually in front of the children. This
person thought Mr. Moore hit the mother one time but didn’t see any marks on the
mother. Ryan’s mother would usually tell Mr. Moore to leave the home when they were
fighting. Mr. Moore lived at another residence but spent the night in the mother's home
frequently. This person stated that Mr. Moore didn’t really like Ryan and treated him
differently than the other two children.

       On September 14, 2007 the CW worker interviewed a service provider for the
parents. The service provider had been in the home once a week. Mr. Moore had
refused to be a part of counseling sessions, indicating it was not his problem. The
mother would not allow Mr. Moore to live in the home but allowed him to watch the
children because she felt like she needed him. Marijuana had never been smelled in the
home. The service provider had knowledge of Ryan’s mother and Mr. Moore fighting but
indicated they had been stepping outside lately so that the children wouldn’t see it.

       On September 17, 2007 a Safety Assessment was completed and the Safety
Decision indicated the children were unsafe. The safety plan was a recommendation of
protective or emergency custody as the parents were unwilling or unable to protect the
children.

        On September 19, 2007 the CW worker interviewed the CW Permanency
Planning worker who stated that the children were placed with Ryan’s mother in trial
reunification on May 25, 2007. The CW worker had been in the home at least once a
month and never had concerns regarding the presence of drugs in the home.
Comprehensive Home Based Services (CHBS) had been in the home weekly since May
9, 2007. The CHBS reports had all been positive. Ryan’s mother displayed favoritism
towards the youngest child.

      On September 19, 2007 the CW investigation was completed with a finding of
Confirmed-Court Intervention Requested. The Report to District Attorney recommended



                                            9
the children remain in OKDHS custody and a Deprived Petition be filed on behalf of the
children, placing Mr. Moore’s child in emergency custody and ending trial reunification
with Ryan and his oldest sibling. On this same date a Deprived Petition was filed by the
District Attorney regarding Ryan’s youngest sibling. The Petition stated Ryan and his
siblings were victims of neglect by substance abuse by caretakers and exposure to
domestic violence.

October 26, 2007
       An Adjudicatory and Disposition Hearing were held on this date regarding Ryan’s
youngest sibling who was adjudicated to be deprived and was to remain in the custody
of OKDHS. The parties and participants were in agreement with the Court’s
determination of the custody and placement of the children. Other findings and orders
included that a disposition report had been completed and the Court adopted and
approved the treatment plan.

       A Review and Permanency Hearing was also held on this date regarding Ryan
and his oldest sibling. The Court finding included the plan to be reunification which
could occur after the parents made marked progress toward reunification and complied
with the terms of the treatment plan. Custody of the children remained with OKDHS in
an out-of-home placement. All parties and participants were in agreement as to custody
and placement of the children. The treatment plan was to continue.

December 21, 2007
       OKDHS received a report stating that during an unsupervised visit with their
mother at her apartment on December 20, 2007 Ryan and his siblings had inadequate
physical care. Ryan was reported to have a hand print on his back. A man was reported
to be asleep in the mother’s bed.

        A CW worker completed a home visit to the placement provider to interview Ryan
and his siblings. Ryan’s oldest sibling repeatedly denied knowing anything but later
indicated that his mother had told him not to talk with worker. The worker attempted to
interview Ryan who was non-verbal and acted shy and fearful of the worker. Worker
viewed Ryan’s back but did not see any marks. Ryan had a physical abuse exam set for
later in the day. Ryan’s youngest sibling was observed unclothed and did not have any
marks or bruises. The child was developmentally appropriate and seemed to be happy.

        The CW worker interviewed the reporter who stated concern about unsupervised
visits. The reporter stated that Ryan gets the majority of the abuse and neglect, and the
youngest sibling gets all of the attention. The reporter stated concern about the kids
being left unsupervised with Ryan’s mother.

      Later on December 21, 2007 Ryan’s mother contacted the CW worker and the
worker asked her about the man reported to be in the home. Ryan’s mother told the CW
worker that this man was her friend’s boyfriend and he was only at the apartment for a
few minutes.




                                           10
        On December 27, 2007 a CW worker spoke with Ryan’s mother in her home.
The home was cluttered but there were no major concerns. The CW worker addressed
issues of inadequate physical care of the children, allegations that Ryan had a mark on
his back and other individuals in the home. The mother offered adequate explanations.
She indicated the male in the home was her friend’s boyfriend. She said she had never
hit her children. She stated that her CHBS worker, counselor, caseworker, and friend
could all vouch that her home was never filthy. The CW worker found plenty of food in
the home on this date.

       On December 28, 2007 the CW worker spoke with the friend that Ryan’s mother
had referred to that could vouch for the condition of the home. This person stated that
she was with the children all day and watched Ryan and his oldest sibling while Ryan’s
mother went to parenting class. The CW worker asked the friend about the adult male in
the home. She stated this was another friend’s boyfriend. She said that she didn’t know
him very well and that he was not around Ryan’s mother often. The friend indicated that
another female friend had been at Ryan’s mother’s apartment all day. She did not think
this person should be around because she did not have a background check.

       The friend stated that the home was clean until the children arrived and then
there were toys. The friend stated the home had been filthy before but not the day the
children were visiting. She saw Ryan’s mother change the child’s diapers that day. Ryan
was also taken to the bathroom. She did not recall any of the children being sick. She
stated the mother would never be mean to the children and would not allow anyone else
be mean to them.

      On December 28, 2007 the CW worker spoke with a male friend of Ryan’s
mother reported to have been in the home on December 20, 2007. He stated that he
was around Ryan’s mother's children. He said that he only saw them for about a minute
as he was asleep for the most part. He said the home was clean.

       On December 28, 2007 the CW worker completed a Safety Assessment
regarding Ryan and his siblings. The Safety Decision was that the children were safe as
they were residing in foster care.

        On January 2, 2008 the CW worker interviewed the Permanency Planning
worker who stated Ryan’s mother seemed to be working diligently on her treatment plan
but was not learning from her services or her mistakes. The CW Permanency Planning
worker indicated very limited contact with Mr. Moore and was unaware as to whether or
not he was working on his treatment plan. Mr. Moore had not visited Ryan’s youngest
sibling in approximately three weeks.

       On January 2, 2008 the CW worker telephoned an individual who had been a
service provider for Ryan’s mother for two years. The service provider stated that she
had been to Ryan’s mother’s home and it was typically clean. The only concern the
service provider had prior to the children being removed from the home was Ryan’s
mother not using discipline as she should. Ryan’s mother had told the service provider



                                          11
about the CW investigation. Ryan’s mother told her that she thought the hand marks
were from Ryan and his oldest sibling fighting. She also told the service provider about
other individuals in the home the day of the children’s visitation. The service provider
stated that Ryan’s mother usually had food in the home.

       On January 8, 2008 the CW worker spoke with Mr. Moore. Mr. Moore told worker
that Ryan’s mother had told him there was an investigation, but he didn't know the
allegations. Mr. Moore stated that he had not been around Ryan’s mother outside of the
supervised visits. He said that before the children were removed, Ryan’s mother was
good with the children but wasn't good at disciplining them. He said he had never seen
the mother spank the children. Mr. Moore said when he picked the mother up to go for
supervised visits with the children, he would pick her up outside her apartment. Mr.
Moore stated that he talked to Ryan’s mother occasionally, but he didn’t know if she
was seeing anyone or if she would tell him that she was.

       On January 9, 2008 the CW worker spoke to a friend of Ryan’s mother reported
to be in the home the day of the unsupervised visit on December 20, 2007. The
individual stated that the children behaved pretty good the day of visitation and that
Ryan’s mother does not get on to the children. She did not notice any bruises on the
children and they were adequately cared for. She stated the man in the home the day of
the unsupervised visit was Ryan’s mother's boyfriend and he lived in the home. The
individual stated that Ryan’s mother was not telling OKDHS the truth because she didn't
want to get in trouble.

       On January 9, 2008 the CW worker received a fax from a medical professional
regarding a child abuse examination of Ryan Weeks conducted on December 21, 2007.
The child abuse exam was completed at the request of the CW worker to verify injuries
that may have occurred on December 20, 2007. The child abuse exam indicated some
signs of scratches on the posterior neck and face. The medical professional indicated a
recommendation that Ryan not have any more unsupervised visits with the mother.

        On January 15, 2008, the CW investigation concluded with a finding of
Confirmed-Services Recommended. The Report to District Attorney recommended that
visits be supervised.

February 22, 2008
       A Court Review and Permanency Hearing were held on this date. OKDHS
informed the Court that after two years the mother had not learned from the services
offered to her in order to become a responsible and reliable mother to her children and
was unable to keep them safe. OKDHS recommended that the children remain in
OKDHS custody and in their current placement. OKDHS recommended that a petition to
terminate parental rights of the mother be filed. OKDHS also recommended that if Mr.
Moore had not made significant progress on his treatment plan within three months,
OKDHS would recommend termination of Mr. Moore’s parental rights as well. OKDHS
requested a three-month review.




                                           12
      The Summary Orders of the Court regarding Ryan and his oldest sibling and the
youngest sibling indicated that all parties were in agreement.

March 22, 2008
       The Journal Entry of Disposition regarding Ryan Weeks and his oldest sibling
reflected the Court Ordered that the treatment and service plan be approved, adopted,
and complied with. Custody of the children was to remain with OKDHS with a
recommendation to continue in the same placement.

April 16, 2008
       A Court Review and Permanency Hearing regarding Ryan and his siblings was
held this date. OKDHS made the same recommendations as for the February 22, 2008
hearing.

        The Permanency and Review Order documented the foster mother for the
children was present and stated that she did not believe the mother was capable of
providing a stable home environment for the children. The State reported that a Petition
to Terminate the mother’s rights would be filed. Additionally, Mr. Moore would be given
one month to complete the Individualized Service Plan concerning Ryan’s youngest
sibling. Mr. Moore was to have a domestic violence inventory scheduled for April 18,
2008.

      The Permanency and Review Order also documented the children were to
remain in the custody of OKDHS. The State was to file a Petition to Terminate.

May 23, 2008
        A Court Review and Initial Appearance to Terminate were held on this date.
OKDHS recommendation to the Court documented that Ryan and his oldest sibling had
been in OKDHS custody since February 28, 2006. Ryan’s youngest sibling had been in
OKDHS custody since September 12, 2007. At the last Court hearing on April 16, 2008,
OKDHS recommended termination of the mother’s parental rights. Since that date, the
mother demonstrated new parenting skills during visits and demonstrated moves toward
maturity and responsibility. Mr. Moore had also shown moves toward maturity and
responsibility by applying for new jobs and maintaining sobriety. Mr. Moore completed
his Individualized Service Plan and was attending individual counseling and weekly
Narcotics Anonymous meetings. Mr. Moore and the mother were reported to be in a
relationship. OKDHS recommended that the children remain in OKDHS custody.
OKDHS also recommended that the mother and Mr. Moore begin weekly unsupervised
visits. Time restraints would be at the discretion of the CW worker. OKDHS requested a
three-month review.

       The Permanency and Review Order documented Court findings that
continuation of the children in the home is not contrary to the welfare of the children; the
Permanency Plan is reunification with a parent, legal guardian or custodian for all
named children; reunification may occur when the parents complete significant progress




                                            13
on treatment plan; custody of the children is to remain with OKDHS; and all parties are
Ordered to fully comply with the treatment plans approved by the Court.

      Other findings and Orders included, State recommends unsupervised visitation
begin and the foster mother voiced concerns to the Court about the parent's ability to
maintain.

August 1, 2008
       A Court Review and Permanency Hearing held on this date. OKDHS
recommendations documented that the family began unsupervised, overnight visits one
night a week on July 7, 2008.

       The Progress Report submitted to the Court indicates that OKDHS received two
separate reports of allegations of domestic violence in the presence of the children
during the July 7th and 8th, 2008 unsupervised visit and the July 21st and 22nd, 2008
unsupervised visit.

      The Progress Report indicates Ryan’s oldest sibling stated his mother and Mr.
Moore were fighting over a video game during the July 7th and 8th, 2008 visit. The CW
worker spoke with Ryan’s oldest sibling two times and “all parties involved”. Each time
the CW worker spoke with Ryan’s oldest sibling his explanation was different.

        The Progress Report indicates that after the July 21st and 22nd, 2008 visit
additional allegations were reported that the mother and Mr. Moore were fighting in front
of the children again. While the CW worker transported the children to a visit, she spoke
with Ryan’s oldest sibling about the allegations. Ryan’s oldest sibling told the CW
worker that Mr. Moore and his mother were fighting over a CD and Mr. Moore cut up his
mother’s jeans with a knife at the lake. He also stated they do not take baths during the
visits.

        The Progress Report indicates the CW worker addressed the allegations with the
mother and Mr. Moore upon arrival at the home with the children. The CW worker noted
the home had running water and working electricity. There were toys for the children in
the bathtub. The mother showed the CW worker the soap she used for the children’s
baths. The CW worker asked Ryan’s oldest sibling again if he took baths while at his
mother’s and he said “yes.” The mother showed worker adequate clothes for the
children and food during this visit. The mother said a CD did break on accident during
the visit but no fight was involved. Mr. Moore stated that he stepped on his pants and
they ripped, but there was no knife involved.

       The Progress Report indicates these allegations were not confirmed. Due to
these allegations, it was recommended that Ryan’s oldest sibling begin individual
counseling to address honesty and the emotional distress that he had endured.

      The mother and Mr. Moore were reported to be attending individual counseling
sessions weekly and had also been participating in weekly CHBS sessions together



                                           14
since June 23, 2008. The mother and Mr. Moore reported that they have found a larger
home for their family and are working with the CHBS worker on when they can move
into the home. OKDHS recommended the children remain in OKDHS custody and be
placed in trial reunification with the mother and Mr. Moore this date. OKDHS requested
a Permanency Hearing this date and a six-month review.

        The Permanency and Review Order documented that continuation of the children
in their home was not contrary to the welfare of the children; the Permanency Plan for
Ryan and his siblings was reunification with a parent; Reunification could occur on
August 1, 2008; custody of the children was to remain with OKDHS, placement with the
mother and Mr. Moore with OKDHS supervision.

   Based on the reports and recommendations, the Court found that the mother and
Mr. Moore had made marked progress toward reunification and OKDHS was granted
permission to return the children to the home of the mother and Mr. Moore. All parties
were ordered to fully comply with the treatment plan approved by the Court.

   Other finding indicated: Case comes on for accelerated review. Court approves trial
reunification with the parents and child support is terminated at this time.

August 6, 2008
        Post-Adjudicatory Review Board report submitted to the Court documenting
concerns and recommendations. The Board expressed concerns regarding the mother’s
history. They expressed concern for the multiple removals of the children from the
mother’s care. The Board asked for an explanation as to the 9 day lapse between the
police calling to notify OKDHS of a filthy house and drug use in front of the children and
their removal. The Board made note of the return of the children 6 months after a report
recommending termination of rights of the mother, multiple job losses by the mother
because of arrest, and inability to find childcare. The Board understood that the mother
had completed her treatment plan and congratulated her. However, they did not concur
with unsupervised visits that were approved since the last Court hearing. The Board
recommended that if the children were removed again to appoint a Court Appointed
Special Advocate.

September 18, 2008
       OKDHS received a report stating Ryan was observed to have a huge hand print
on the left side of his face. Ryan also had fingerprint marks behind his left ear. Ryan told
the reporter that his dad (Rocky) put his things away and then dad left without saying
anything. He said that his brother hit him. The caller did not believe that was possible
because the hand print was that of an adult, not a child.

       A CW worker interviewed Ryan on September 18, 2008. During the interview
Ryan stated that Rocky threw a shoe at him prior to school. When asked why Rocky
threw a shoe at him he replied that Rocky likes to leave bruises on him. Worker asked
Ryan to point out the bruises that Rocky has left on him. Ryan pointed to two bruises on




                                            15
his shins. The bruises appeared to be normal play-type bruises. When asked if Rocky
had left any other bruises on him he indicated that he had not.

         Worker noticed that Ryan's cheeks were reddish in color but did not see a
distinctive hand print. He did not have any bruising on his face or neck. Worker pointed
to Ryan's cheeks and asked Ryan what happened to his cheeks. Ryan stated that he
fell off the bed and that his oldest sibling pushed him. Ryan said his mother was at work
when this happened and he didn’t know where Rocky was.

        Ryan’s oldest sibling was interviewed on September 18, 2008. During the course
of the interview the sibling indicated this morning Ryan couldn't find his shoe and Rocky
was mad. Ryan finally found his shoe and Rocky took them to school. The oldest sibling
said that Ryan and he (the sibling) got into a fight this morning and he hit Ryan in the
face. The sibling stated his mother was at work when this happened.

       A CW worker made a home visit on September 18, 2008. During the home visit
Ryan was playful with worker. When worker tried to talk with him he would run and bury
his head in his mother's or Rocky's lap. Ryan appeared to function at a normal level for
his age. He was very playful and climbing up and down from the couch. He did not
seem to be fearful of either parent. Worker was also able to observe that there was
adequate food in the home for the family. The home was free from clutter.

        During the home visit the CW worker also saw Ryan’s oldest and youngest
sibling. The youngest sibling was viewed and did not have any bruising. The child
appeared to be functioning at a normal level for her age.

       During the home visit Ryan’s mother indicated she was at work and didn’t know
what had happened. The mother stated that the boys fight a lot. She stated that Rocky
takes the children to school on the days that she works and she takes them on the days
that she doesn't work.

        Mr. Moore was also interviewed during the home visit. He stated the children
were getting ready for school. Ryan and his oldest sibling were in the bathroom and he
heard Ryan cry. He went to see what happened and Ryan told him that the oldest
sibling hit him on the cheek. He could not locate Ryan’s shoe but once they found it he
took the children to school.

       On November 10, 2008 a Safety Assessment regarding the September 18, 2008
report was completed and approved on this date. The Safety Decision indicated that the
children were unsafe. Documentation indicated that during the course of the
investigation the children in the home appeared to be safe from immediate danger or
serious harm, but on November 4, 2008 Ryan died and Rocky Moore was arrested.

       On November 12, 2008 the CW investigation regarding the report of September
18, 2008 concluded with a finding of Services Recommended. The recommendation to
the District Attorney documented that during the investigation there was no evidence



                                           16
that Ryan Weeks or his siblings were in an unsafe environment with the mother and
step-father. All three children were in OKDHS custody but were reunified on August 1,
2008. The interviews with Ryan and the oldest sibling did not reveal any evidence that
Ryan had been abused by either his mother or Rocky Moore.

November 4, 2008
        OKDHS requested authorization to terminate the Trial Reunification by removal
of the children from the home. The Request for Termination of Trial Reunification was
filed on November 5, 2008 in the District Court of Beckham County.

      An Order Terminating Trial Reunification was filed regarding Ryan’s oldest and
youngest sibling in the District Court of Beckham County.

2008 Ryan died from blunt force trauma and the step-father, Rocky Moore was
arrested. The Initial Safety Plan was removal of Ryan’s siblings from the home.




Inquiry about this information may be made through the Oklahoma Department of Human
Services, Office of Communications, at (405) 521-3027.




                                           17

				
DOCUMENT INFO
Description: Infant Injury Attorney Oklahoma City document sample