State Sued over Foster Care Child’s Death

THE BIG ISLAND (Ben Caxton) — In 2016 the State of Hawai`i took toddler Fabian Garett-Garcia from his home and parents for his own protection. A year later on July 25 of 2017, he was dead, the victim of child abuse by his foster care family. Emergency workers found the boy “lifeless and lying face down beside a pool of his own vomit on a bed”. At the hospital, doctors noted bruising on the 3-year-old’s forehead, his eye sockets and under his right eye, cheek, chin, and forearm. He was also bleeding in both eyes. The foster parent claimed the boy had fallen, but police arrested her on suspicion of murder. To this day, however, prosecutors have not filed charges. Now the parents are suing the state over their son’s death. The lawsuit says Fabian’s death followed months of visible injuries on Fabian and his younger siblings and numerous notifications of suspected child abuse by Fabian’s parents to Hawaii social workers. The two younger siblings were reunited with their parents in September 2017. The lawsuit filed in Hawaii’s Third Circuit Court names the state Department of Human Services, the Catholic Charities organization, and licensed caregivers Chasity Alcosiba-McKenzie and Clifton McKenzie. The civil lawsuit seeks a jury trial and unspecified monetary damages.

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