- Law Cases
by Sharon Rondeau
(Nov. 6, 2012) — Jeffrey and Erica Henderson, whose children were taken away by the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) approximately 19 months ago after they were reportedly wrongfully incarcerated, continue to struggle to regain custody of their children, the elder six of whom have been designated as “adoptable” by Juvenile Court Judge Marguerite Downing.
The “head of all children’s attorneys” is a cross-dresser who allegedly “trains children’s attorneys to steal kids and adopts them out to Hollywood homosexual couples who can’t have children.’
Downing will preside over a hearing on November 19 to initiate the adoption of the elder six Henderson children despite the fact that the parents have stated that they have complied with every request which the court and DCFS have made of them.
Although the youngest child, an infant, was taken from Mrs. Henderson on August 31 without the “verification” required by court rules, he continues to grow up in foster care rather than with his natural parents. Mrs. Henderson had refused to sign a “Voluntary Care Plan” in early August because she stated that it would have been “an admission” that she had abused him. Three weeks later, a DCFS social worker and two Los Angeles Police went to her home and told her that if she did not hand over the infant, who was breastfeeding, she would be arrested. The other six children were present for an unsupervised visit at the time.
On the morning of October 24, the Los Angeles Police Department unexpectedly appeared at Mrs. Henderson’s door seeking her husband, who had done nothing wrong. They left and returned in a vehicle described as a “paddy wagon” which they parked behind Mrs. Henderson’s home for an unknown period of time. The Post & Email was told that they finally left sometime in the afternoon without incident.
The Hendersons are not alone in reporting abuse on the part of social workers employed by the Los Angeles Department of Children and Family Services. The press in California has reported abuse of the system motivated by large federal payouts for placing children in foster care. A group of “consumer attorneys” has produced a number of videos and asserted that there is corruption within the Orange County, CA child and family service agency. Atty. Shawn McMillan stated:
Deanna Fogarty was awarded custody of her two daughters after her divorce. Child Protective Services investigated the children’s claims of abuse by their father and allowed him only monitored visitation. After a personality clash with Ms. Fogarty, social workers falsely claimed she skipped a mandatory visit and told the girls their father was trying to take them away from her. The court then ordered the children removed from Fogarty’s home. Social workers coerced Fogarty into giving her ex-husband full custody of the children. In 2001 Fogarty sued for violation of her constitutional right to familial association, alleging social workers fabricated evidence and withheld evidence from the juvenile court to obtain orders allowing the removal of her daughters. Fogarty also sued Orange County, claiming its customs, policies, and practices were unconstitutional. In 2007 an Orange County jury found the defendants liable and handed down one of the largest parental rights judgments against a child protective services agency in the U.S. It took Fogarty more than six years to regain custody of her children. Attorney Shawn McMillan was lead counsel at trial and on appeal. The judgment became final in April 2011, when the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear it.
Today Mrs. Henderson reported that she had a supervised visit with the seven children on Sunday but that “The monitor, who is a DCFS social worker says that the foster mothers of XXXXX and the baby have reported me for child abuse again. This “abuse” supposedly happened in front of the social worker. The social worker was very confused as to why this is happening when we have not had ANY falls or scrapes or bruises. The foster mothers claim he is being unsupervised. I explained to the monitor that the foster mother has intentions to adopt and I believe this is why they are doing this.”
One of the Henderson children had to have stitches to the area above his eye several weeks ago, and Mrs. Henderson was not able to discover the cause because the foster mother speaks Spanish primarily. When Mrs. Henderson asked the foster mother to explain in Spanish, as she has had some knowledge of the language, the foster mother declined. Another child has reportedly been molested while in foster care as well as physically abused by another foster child.
The Post & Email has reported the information received from Mrs. Henderson to Mr. Armand Montiel, Public Affairs Director of DCFS, but due to privacy laws, he cannot discuss individual cases nor acknowledge that any specific family is receiving DCFS services. Mr. Montiel told The Post & Email that the juvenile courts in Los Angeles County are open to reporters, although a citizen reporter stated that Judge Downing requires preapproval of a reporter prior to any hearing he or she wishes to attend.
Montiel has stated that it would be very unlikely for children to be knowingly abused in a foster home and left to remain there or placement in a foster home where a different language is spoken, but the situations Mrs. Henderson has described have not been altered since they were raised with each child’s social worker.
A phone call made to the Edmund D. Edelman Children’s Court at 1:10 p.m. PST to inquire as to the procedure for a reporter to obtain any approval which might be required was not answered. Mr. Montiel had indicated that journalists are allowed into the courtroom except for “cause.”
Judge Downing has conducted hearings regarding the Henderson children without the parents’ knowledge, which violates court rules.
© 2012, The Post & Email. All rights reserved.
Tags: DCFS, Edmund D. Edelman Children's Court, Erica Henderson, Jeffrey Henderson, Judge Marguerite Downing, Judge Michael Nash, Los Angeles DCFS, Los Angeles Police Department, Mr. Armand Montiel, The Henderson family, Voluntary Care Plan