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ACS Sees First Prosecution Of Case Workers In NYC

NEW YORK (CBS 2) -- Two social workers with the Administration for Children's Services were accused of failing to help a little girl they may have saved.

Carlotta Brett-Pierce
Carlotta Brett-Pierce (Photo/MySpace)

Former workers Chereece Bell and Damon Adams were charged with criminally negligent homicide - the first such prosecution of ACS case workers in New York City.

Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes was vowing to investigating the entire agency.

"There's an Italian word. It's called basta. It means enough," said Hynes.

Adams was accused of never visiting 4-year-old Marchella Brett-Pierce who was beaten and weighed just 18 pounds when she died in September, and with falsifying records after her death.

Bell, who supervised Adams, faced charges for failing to monitor his work.

Bell's lawyer said they shouldn't be held responsible.

"Where is the management? How about the people that were in charge?" said attorney Joshua Horowitz.

Union leaders said the prosecution amounts to a witchhunt.

"Indict the whole agency. Indict the decision makers, indict the people that cut the budget so there were no preventive service workers left," argued Faye Moore, president of the Social Service Employees Union.

The little girl's mother, Carlotta Brett-Pierce, was charged in November with second-degree murder.

Her grandmother, Loretta Brett, was added to the long list of those allegedly responsible for the tragic death Wednesday. She's charged with second-degree manslaughter.

This agency was supposed to adopt new policies following the death of 7-year-old Nixzmary Brown in 2006. The DA said a special grand jury will investigate if the agency actually did so.

What should be done at the ACS? Let us know below…


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