Case Worker for Starved PA Teenager Gets 11 Years

Judge brings the hammer down on Social Workers responsible for handicapped child’s death

WARNING: This story is quite graphic and unsettling.

By MaryClaire Dale, AP

PHILADELPHIA – Judge Stewart Dalzell presided over a harrowing five-week trial this year that laboriously detailed the slow, painful demise of 14-year-old Danieal Kelly. She had cerebral palsy but had once thrived in the care of her father and his attentive girlfriend in Phoenix. A photograph from that era taken on a class trip shows a bright-eyed girl in pigtails grinning broadly for the camera.

But when his relationship failed, Daniel Kelly left Danieal with her unfit mother in Philadelphia, who was raising eight children in a squalid two-bedroom home.

By the time Danieal died in August 2006, starved and dehydrated, she weighed 42 pounds and had maggots crawling in her deep bedsores. She had not been to school or seen a doctor in the previous 10 months, despite being on the city’s radar.

The city was paying a startup firm called MultiEthnic Behavioral Health Inc. $1 million a year to focus on its neediest social-work cases.

But the politically connected firm — led by experienced, Ph.D.-level social worker Michal Kamuvaka — frequently skipped home visits, assigned student interns to the Kellys and other complex cases, and furiously forged documents to try to cover their tracks after Danieal died.

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One Comment

  1. Anonymous says:

    Omg this made me sick to my stomach. How could anyone let that happen to a little girl.

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