CPS Investigated Home of Disabled Teenager Now Dead

10-20-05 - Child Protective Services twice investigated the home of a bedridden daughter found dead inside an apartment after being left alone for up to two weeks when her mother was taken to a mental hospital, officials said.

CPS spokeswoman Marissa Gonzales said the agency investigated whether the mother was getting her daughter proper medical attention twice during the last two years, according to a story in Thursday's editions of The Dallas Morning News.

The disabled 17-year-old was found Tuesday at an east Dallas condominium. She has not been identified.

During the CPS investigations, workers were told that the woman could be mentally ill, but they could not substantiate the allegations and closed the cases, the newspaper reported.

Cary Fain, founder of Grace Miracle Works, which helps the homeless and needy mothers and children, said he knew the mother and daughter and tried to get them help, including calling a CPS worker.

"I told her what was going on, that the woman was severely mentally ill and that she wasn't taking care of her" daughter, he said. "When I called back, nothing had been done."

The girl's mother was taken into custody Oct. 5 at the Wal-Mart where she worked after a manager reported she was "walking around the store in a daze and scaring customers with her hand gestures, believed to be voodoo," according to a police report.

The woman was taken for an evaluation by a police officer who thought she was mentally ill. She remains at Terrell State Hospital.