Colorado Supreme Court to decide if foster parents can intervene in abuse hearings
When and how should foster parents intervene in court cases involving the children in their care? That's the question at the center of a case that the Colorado Supreme Court will hear tomorrow. It could be said the case started five years ago when the Montezuma County Department of Human Services got a report of a four-month-old boy with blood in his mouth.
According to court documents, the boy's parents told a caseworker that perhaps his grandmother caused the injury. The caseworker advised them not to leave the infant alone with her, and that was that.
Except it wasn't. A month later, the boy was back in the emergency room with a lacerated tongue. This time, the parents blamed the injury on the infant himself. The hospital treated the baby and sent him home with his parents without calling human services.
A month after that, however, the hospital did call human services to report that the baby had a bruised cheek. The parents had yet another excuse: the injury was caused by his crib, they said. Once again, the baby was sent home with his mom and dad.
Another month passed, and the baby was back in the ER, this time with an elbow injury. An X-ray revealed that the elbow was fractured, and after initially sending the boy home, the hospital asked his parents to bring him back in. When they showed up three days later, the seven-month-old had new bruises on his face, lips and gums. At that point, human services removed the boy from his parents and put him in foster care.
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