A lawsuit was filed against Los Angeles County and the Department of Children and Family Services by a 15-year-old girl and her 12-year-old sister, who were allegedly abused sexually by one of their foster parents in 2012-14.
The Los Angeles Superior Court lawsuit was filed Thursday and identifies the plaintiffs only as A.R. and C.R. The complaint was filed on their behalf by their mother, alleging negligence, sexual battery, assault and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
A representative for the county and the DCFS did not immediately reply to a request for comment.
A.R. and C.R. were transferred to the DCFS’ care in October 2012 and the department placed both of them with Homes of Hope Foster Family Agency in West Covina, the suit states. They were eventually put in the care of foster mother Lorena Medina and her husband and fellow foster parent, Jose, the suit states.
The suit alleges Jose Medina abused other children that the DCFS and Homes of Hope placed in the Medina home before 2012 and that despite having knowledge of such abuses, neither agency investigated.
From 2012 through 2014, Jose Medina “sexually abused, assaulted, attacked, molested and raped A.R. and C.R.,” according to the suit.
In August 2013, the plaintiffs underwent medical examinations for suspected sexual abuse after A.R. complained of pain while urinating as well as itching in her buttocks, according to the suit.
The examining physician then notified the DCFS, Director Philip Browning and Chief Deputy Director Brandon Nichols that the examinations indicated possible child sexual abuse, the suit states
Last May, A.R. reported to her mother that Medina had sexually molested her and C.R., the suit states. The siblings’ mother then contacted her case worker and reported what her children told her, the suit states.
The sexual abuse was reported to DCFS and the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and a criminal complaint was filed against Jose Medina by the District Attorney’s Office, the suit states. Details on the status of the criminal case were not immediately available.
The suit also alleges that due to the small size of the Medina home, Lorena Medina “knew of should have known” that her husband was abusing the plaintiffs, but failed to report it.
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