It's been months since a 5-year-old Massachusetts boy was last seen. So why didn't the investigation into his disappearance start until last week?
This is Jeremiah Oliver. NECN reports he was last seen in September. Now, his mother and her boyfriend are in custody in connection with his disappearance.
Here's the thing. A Massachusetts state-provided social worker was supposed to be visiting Jeremiah once a month after questions about his mother's mental competence and possible abuse in the home. And now we know — those visits weren't happening, which is why local media are calling the tragic case a failure of the state.
The Boston Globe's Yvonne Abraham writes, "He was just one endangered child among many, his precious little life failing to rise to the top of a pile — and not even a tall pile — of case files on a desk."
The social worker who was supposed to be making those visits has been fired — and so has that worker's supervisor. Neither have been named though.
Investigators think Jeremiah's 28-year-old mother Elsa Oliver and her boyfriend know where the 5-year-old is. Volunteer search parties have been scouring the neighborhood where he was last seen. (Via WFXT)
WCVB was there.
"Be with us as we go out there and help us to be fruitful we pray in Jesus' name."
So how did officials come to realize the 5-year-old was missing? Police say Jeremiah's 8-year-old sister talked to staff at school.
And according to court records, that little girl had told authorities their mother's boyfriend was physically abusive. That boyfriend — 22-year-old Alberto Sierra — has a history of domestic abuse according Worcester County District Attorney Joseph Early. (Via WHDH)
Jeremiah's father Jose Oliver — who hadn't seen the boy in two years — is leading the call for answers. He told authorities he doubts Jeremiah's mother is mentally competent to face charges.
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