Letters to the Editor

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CPS: Punish the guilty in Kekoa’s death

Letter by Carl J. Olsen, Puyallup on July 19, 2010 at 10:10 am with 5 Comments »
July 22, 2010 9:10 am

Re: “State set to pay $2.1M in death” (TNT, 7-17).

Who is being punished with an award of $2.1 million in the death of 3-year-old Michael-Kekoa Ravenell? Obviously we, the taxpayers, must be guilty since we will pay the bill.

Only one “inexperienced” Child Protective Services worker fired as a scapegoat and some extra training for others doesn’t ring of justice to me. How about firing everyone who had any responsibility for the policies and procedures that allowed Kekoa’s death?

That might just motivate the remaining CPS personnel to do the jobs they were hired to do. After all, they and their policies were at fault. An award of $2.1 million paid by the taxpayers has no real meaning to CPS employees.

My heart goes out to Kekoa’s family for their great loss. But punishing the taxpayer for something over which they had no control is unjust. If a dollar award is made, it should be paid personally by those whose negligence allowed the travesty to occur. It is not just to allow the family and their attorneys to “win the lottery” with an award from the public treasury.

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  1. blakeshouse says:

    Just continuing the FINE legacy set forth by the idiot now in the mansion in Olympia. Look at all the money wasted by her by not doing her job. This is the legacy handed down to the people of this state. It may be finally setting in that ya get what ya vote for..Frankly we would be much better off with piles of dog crap in the seats now occupied by the socialist/marxists…..

  2. frankiethomas says:

    When an employee screws up on the job and through that negligence causes the death of another, the employer is liable. In this case the employer was the State. To refer to it, in this case, as “winning the lottery” is simply wrong. This case was blatant negligence, and a financial settlement is the only compensation the father can seek. We as a state apparently cannot get CPS fixed, so we bear the burden.

  3. reformedliberal says:

    People need to wake up and recognize CPS for what it is:

    CPS is *not* a social service agency.
    CPS *is* a law enforcement agency staffed by social workers.

    It is one of the most odious and dangerous constructs imaginable, and one that is doomed to fail no matter how it is tweaked or reconfigured.

  4. lasciviouslynn says:

    I also agree CPS failed this child; however the child’s family caused her death not the CPS worker. I agree that people look to sue to win their lottery.

  5. frankiethomas says:

    Then you should review the facts of this case, Lynn. His father tried to have him removed from harms way and CPs refused, saying there was no evidence he was in any danger.

    Kekoa’s father Michael Lee Ravenell reported suspected abuse to the Dept. of Social and Health Services one month before his son’s death. He allegedly found severe bruising on his son’s body.

    The attorneys argued that state social workers failed to investigate the matter sufficiently. They say Thomas had a record of abusing children and was convicted of child abuse – information that could have been found with a simple check of the agency’s computer.

    Kekoa’s sister, Chelsea, was also allegedly abused by Thomas.

    In depositions, a DSHS supervisor allegedly testified she would have removed the Kekoa and Chelsea from the home if the social worker had checked the agency’s computer. Both the supervisor and social worker allegedly claimed they did not get enough support to do their jobs.

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