FL to review recent child deaths - WFLA News Channel 8

FL to review recent child deaths

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TALLAHASSEE, FL -

Five children being watched by the Department of Children and Family Services have died since May.

A week ago Monday, we talked with former D-C-F Secretary David Wilkins about the recent deaths and the departments plan to prevent future tragedies.

In one of the recent deaths, a child protective investigator was fired for forging documents about an 11-month old baby --- who died after being left inside of a hot car.

Three days after the interview Wilkins resigned. Governor Rick Scott appointed Esther Jacobo as interim secretary. She met with staff this week about changes the department needs to take to prevent future deaths.

On Friday, Jacabo ordered a review of all child deaths due to abuse or neglect in 2013, if the department had prior involvement with the family.

Jacabo sent a letter to Pete Digre, Assistant Deputy Secretary for Operations at DCF.

In the letter Jacabo says, "I am deeply disturbed by the recent child deaths that have occurred around the state due to abuse or neglect." She goes on to say, "These tragic events demand a detailed examination and analysis so we can fully understand what happened and identify actions we can take to prevent future tragedies from taking place."

Using "whatever resources are necessary," the interim secretary urged Digre to complete the review of all cases as quickly as possible.

Jacabo also is asking for the state's regional managing directors to reach out to local law enforcement to identify any ways which may "leverage the resources."

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