L.A. County Social Workers Fired over Palmdale Boy's Death - Los Angeles News | FOX 11 LA KTTV

L.A. County Social Workers Fired over Palmdale Boy's Death

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It's a regular part of a Board of Supervisors meeting, the public can address the board with comments.  Tuesday, a number of people complained to the supervisors that nothing had been done to reprimand social workers of the DCFS who had worked on the Gabriel Fernandez case.  He's the 8 year old that was died in May and his mother and boyfriend have since been charged with his murder.  Gabriel had tried to tell social workers and law enforcement what was happening to him.  And, others, like his teacher reported that they believed Gabriel was at risk.  Roseanne, who identified herself as Gabriel's cousin asked pointedly what was being done.  Supervisor Mike Antonovich in an unscripted moment, likely surprised her and others with the announcement that four DCFS employees were fired and three others reprimanded.  Indeed, DCFS Director Philip Browning sent a letter to his employees which reads in part, "I am writing to share with you that "intent to discharge letters" have been given to 4 staff involved with the Gabriel F. case and letters of reprimand or warning were given to other staff who worked on this case."  I asked Mr. Browning if criminal charges were possible for the fired employees.  He told me that was beyond his scope, but that County Counsel and the independent Child Special Investigation Unit would make recommendations.  He went on to say that he didn't believe what they did or didn't do didn't rise to the level of a crime.  Others, like Gabriel's grandfather disagree and believe that they should be charged with child endangerment for leaving him in the home when there were clear signs of abuse.  

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