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For Immediate Release
February 8, 2005
Media Contact:
Kevin Enright 410-576-6357

CURRAN ASKS SUPREME COURT TO REVIEW CASE OF NEGLECTED CHILD


Attorney General J. Joseph Curran Jr. announced today that he has asked the United States Supreme Court to review a Maryland Court of Appeals decision in the case of Baltimore City Department of Social Services vs. Teresa B. The question Attorney General Curran would like the Supreme Court to answer is, “Can a juvenile court require a parent to disclose the last place she saw her abused or neglected child who disappeared from court-order foster care?” The Attorney General’s petition for a “writ of certiorari” requesting Supreme Court review was filed last week.

This question stems from a case in which Maryland’s highest court ruled the juvenile court could not order the mother of a missing and seriously ill child to disclose the child’s last known location so that the Department of Social Services could find and protect the child from further harm. "This is an issue that touches the lives of more than 500,000 of our country's most vulnerable children. We are hopeful that the Supreme Court will act to preserve the powers of the courts to protect these children," said Attorney General Curran. Christopher McCabe, Secretary of the Maryland Department of Human Resources, agrees, " Judges must have the ability to insist that a parent answer a simple question that may prove critical to the discovery, or even the survival, of a missing abused or neglected child: where did you last see your child?"

The Attorney General’s Office expects to hear from the Supreme Court by April 2005.


 

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