Staten Island Forced Boy Into Foster Care 9 Years Ago Who Disappeared – Now Agrees To Pay $6 Million To Help Find Him

Here is the harsh reality of child protective services.  Often they react hastily and with no real thought to the nuclear family nor extended family as the first measure for looking after relative children.  They are often tossed in foster homes where they disappear, are sexually molested or worse.  The City of Staten Island is now agreeing to put aside $6 million to look for a boy they forced into the system of foster care nine years ago, who disappeared.

The New York Post reports:

Patrick Alford was 7 when he disappeared while taking out the trash in January 2010.

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City Administration for Children’s Services workers and foster-care agency St. Vincent’s Services inexplicably rushed Patrick and his younger sister into foster homes rather than leave them with loving relatives, and then ignored the special-needs boy as he spiraled into despair, according to court papers.

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Patrick, who spoke only English, made repeated attempts to escape his foster home, where Spanish was the primary language, and had violent outbursts and suicidal thoughts, court papers said.

After nearly a decade without word of Patrick’s fate, “we have no information that would dissuade us from searching for him,” said Jonathan Lerner, a lawyer appointed pro bono to represent Patrick’s legal interests.

The settlement money is being held in a trust for Patrick, and some of the funds can be used to aid in the search for the boy.

Patrick and his sister were apparently kidnapped from the “safe and loving care” of aunt Bianca Toledo.  Why do I say kidnapped?  Because there was no court order to remove the children.

The disappearance of Patrick and more information since he was taken is outlined at The Charley Project:

Patrick was last seen in the New York City borough of Brooklyn at approximately 9:00 p.m. on January 22, 2010. He had been placed in a foster home in the Spring Creek Development complex, also known as Starrett City, three weeks before. The Spring Creek Development is in 100 block of Vandalia Avenue.

Patrick told his foster mother, Librada Moran, that he planned to run away to rejoin his biological mother, Jennifer Rodriguez. A photo of Rodriguez is posted with case summary. Patrick was last seen assisting Moran with household chores; he took out the trash and never came back. He has never been heard from again.

Rodriguez, who lives in the New York City borough of Staten Island, lost custody of Patrick and his four-year-old sister for alleged neglect. She reportedly knew the address of his foster home, and her aunt claims she had threatened to kidnap Patrick.

A few days after Patrick’s disappearance a judge ordered her to present her son at a family court hearing. Rodriguez didn’t do so, stating she didn’t have Patrick and didn’t know his whereabouts. She was briefly jailed for contempt, then released after she passed a polygraph test.

She still maintains her innocence in her son’s disappearance, stating she believed he ran away and is hiding somewhere. Various other members of Patrick’s family, including people as far away as Maryland and Florida, have been investigated in his case. Several of Patrick’s relatives have accused each other of hiding him.

In October 2010, Rodriguez filed a federal lawsuit against New York City, the Administration for Children’s Services (ACS), Patrick’s foster mother and the foster parents’ apartment complex. She alleged that the ACS took Patrick from her custody without sufficient cause, and that they were negligent when they placed him in an unfit foster home instead of with relatives, such as his father.

Rodriguez alleged that Moran couldn’t communicate with Patrick because she didn’t speak English and he didn’t speak Spanish, and that Patrick had repeatedly tried to run away, attacked his foster siblings, and even threatened to harm himself after he was placed in Moran’s home.

A federal judge threw out the suit in March 2011, but ruled that Rodriguez could sue individual caseworkers and St. Vincent’s Services, the child care agency in charge of Patrick’s case.

In 2013, Rodriguez amended her filing to include a claim for her son’s wrongful death. She stated she filed the suit to get answers in her son’s disappearance. Patrick’s father has filed a similar federal lawsuit, although he hasn’t amended his complaint to allege wrongful death.

Patrick may still be in the Brooklyn area. His case remains unsolved.  According to court documents, Child Services also provided “false and misleading statements” to a Staten Island family court judge about the case and they failed to provide emergency psychiatric care for Patrick as well.

Mr. Lerner added, “Any information that comes to the trustee’s attention will be vetted by a professional. … There will be procedures to make sure any money spent will be spent wisely.”

I wonder if the “professional” will be a government employee, sort of like the ones who made the unwise decision in how they handled these children.

While I do think there are some decent people inside that system, it really is not the government’s role to be involved in this.  The reason they are now is because Christian communities are not taking care of these issues by ministering and helping families.  They seem all too concerned with pleasing themselves and where the church is not upholding its proper role, whether it be in a situation like this or charity or whatever, government is all too happy to advance, and the result is always tyranny.

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