The state’s child-welfare agency is named as one of the defendants in a lawsuit alleging that a 12-year-old was sexually abused while at the Boys Home of the South, the Anderson Independent-Mail reports.
An attorney representing the plaintiff, is Abbeville lawyer Thomas Hite III, according to the article. Hite, a Democrat, is challenging Republican Craig Gagnon for S.C. House District 11 in November.
According to the article the lawsuit alleges:
• The boy was removed from his home in 1998 and the Department of Social Services eventually placed him at the group home.
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• The child was sexually abused by a house parent multiple times in 2004 and 2005.
• The child reported the attacks to the group home staff and state workers for Social Services.
• The defendants in the suit include the S.C. Department of Social Services, the Boys Home of the South and former staff.
Social Services recently requested 202 more case workers to lower caseloads to manageable levels.
Social Services Director Lillian Koller, whom Haley appointed in 2011, resigned in June, saying her tenure at the agency’s helm had become a “distraction.”
Her resignation came after months of hearings before a state Senate panel investigating claims that Social Services missed abuse cases involving children who later died.