A 16 year CPS case and lawsuit in Orange County, California may finally be coming to a close. It’s an example of what happens when government caseworkers believe they have the right to lie.
Back in 2000, CPS removed two daughters from their mother’s home and they were held in foster care for six-and-a-half years. After the mother finally recovered her children, she filed a lawsuit against CPS in 2007 for damages to her family. Known as the “Right To Lie” case, the lawsuit has continued ever since. Now, the case is one step away from the Supreme Court.
Why Was CPS Involved?
The parties in this case are mother Deanna Fogarty and her daughters, Kendall and Preslie Hardwick. The children were removed by CPS because of allegations of impending harm and abuse by their mom (meaning that nothing had actually happened yet).
Then, after Kendall and Preslie were removed from the home, contact between Deanna and her children was cut off. When CPS visited the daughters’ therapists or the foster families hosting the girls, they were extremely upset and miserable. They requested many times to be returned home to their mother.
CPS Workers Committed Perjury In Court
During the lawsuit, the caseworkers involved in removing the children presented false evidence. They stated that the children were doing well and they were happy in foster care. In reality, the opposite was true.
The caseworkers committed perjury regarding the welfare of the children and the reasons for their removal. The real kicker? The caseworkers believed that as government employees, they were entitled to “qualified immunity” from prosecution for perjury.
In other words, as government employees, they believed the law did not apply to them.
How is it right to deliberately lie, fabricate evidence and present false information in court for any reason? And, even worse, for the purpose of removing children from the home of a fit and loving parent?
At a hearing in December 2016, the three-judge panel did not appear to agree with the caseworkers’ arguments that they had the right to lie in court. (To watch the hearing, click here or view the video below.) But, the fight is not over. There is another key step in the legal process.
Case Heading To The Supreme Court?
If the California court rules against the caseworkers and the case is appealed, it will advance to the Supreme Court of the United States.
Should that happen, the Supreme Court could officially establish whether child welfare caseworkers have the constitutional right to lie and present false evidence to remove children from their families. This would set a dangerous precedent extending CPS’ power throughout the United States.
We will continue to monitor this case, especially as it relates to the rights of homeschool parents in Texas.
The THSC Watchmen are working daily in Austin, monitoring the legislative process and fighting bad bills that would injure parental rights and the right homeschool. If you want to support the THSC Watchmen in their mission of Keeping Texas Families Free, please consider giving to help fund their efforts at the Capitol this legislative session.