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Child Welfare Official Says She Was Harassed

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A Los Angeles County child welfare official says she was harassed after claiming reports were falsified to cover up errors that led to child deaths.

Darlene McDade-White is lead internal affairs investigator for the Department of Children and Family Services. She claims her bag was searched without a warrant earlier this month by officials who suspected she'd leaked confidential information to the Los Angeles Times.

She and another official had filed whistle-blower claims against the agency, alleging the department eliminated mention of errors in cases that ended in death.

Departmental director Trish Ploehn denies the allegation.

The department already is under fire for failing to report dozens of child deaths linked to abuse or neglect.

(© Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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