by Health Impact News / Medical Kidnap Staff

On September 4th, 2020, Sophia Rosas from the state of Washington, had one of her babies ripped from her arms for the third time in 2 years. First, her oldest Zurius, in November 2018, after an accident resulted in a broken arm and CPS involvement without a trial. Her second son, Riley, was removed at birth in November 2019 – for the mere reason that there was an open case with Zurius. 

Then, less than two months after Riley had been returned home in July of this year, he was ripped from her arms once again. 

This time over his parent’s medical marijuana use in legal Washington State.

See:

Washington Couple Harassed Over Medical Marijuana Use – Children Kidnapped and Allegedly Scheduled for Adoption

Many times when a child is removed from the home it can take quite a while to find a foster home for them to go to, depending on the availability of homes and number of children in need of care.

In some states, so many children have been removed from their homes that there are not enough foster homes available to house them all.

It has been reported that many foster kids end up sleeping in small rooms at the Department’s office building until placement can be found.

See:

Foster children are still sleeping in state offices amid shortage of homes

Kansas again keeping foster kids in offices

Our children are sleeping in state offices

After Riley was removed, every few hours Sophia texted the social worker who took him, Joni McDairmant, to find out how her son was doing, and whether he had been placed in a home yet – as promised when they had removed him.

 

Sophia never heard back from Joni McDairmant, and spent the weekend in unimaginable fear, terrified of where her baby could have gone. The horror stories of physical and sexual abuse in foster care are all too real and frequent to ignore. 

After the long holiday weekend, and almost 96 hours of silence about their son’s whereabouts, the social worker involved, Joni McDairmant, finally responded to Sophia and Sean’s messages on Tuesday, September 8th. 

Serra points out,

“For CPS social workers, this is a job. They work 8am – 5pm, Monday through Friday, and are often penalized for taking overtime, so they avoid it. When it’s a weekend, especially a long one with a holiday like in this case, you cannot reach them for days at a time.

But for parents, this is their LIFE. They suffer every moment of every day, because social workers behave like their lack of response doesn’t affect anyone since they aren’t on the clock anymore.

But it does. It affects the whole family. Especially the children.”

A virtual visit was allegedly offered to Sean and Sophia, but never given. They were also notified that there would be a Family Team Decision Meeting held via conference call. Sophia and Sean attended that meeting, along with their family advocate, Serra Frank; from the Fight for Lilly. 

However, the meeting didn’t last long once the social workers learned they were being recorded. Joni McDairmant objected to being recorded, and said she didn’t give permission because she “didn’t like how the recordings had been used so far.” 

Sophia and Sean live streamed the meeting through their family support page on Facebook.

Serra told Health Impact News:

“Today’s family team meeting reminded me of the chorus in a song from the new Hamilton musical called THE ROOM WHERE IT HAPPENS.

Across the country – hundreds of thousands of families are coerced and manipulated into unjust agreements, unnecessary assessments, services, and even forced adoption and termination of parental rights, through these exact “Family Team Decision Meetings” – mainly because society is in the dark about what is happening behind closed doors… because NO ONE ELSE IS IN THE ROOM WHERE IT HAPPENS. 

This is exactly what happened to Sean and Sophia for the last 2 years – the use of intimidation to coerce services and compliance. But things are different now and changing quickly. They have found their voices and are fighting to save their family by documenting everything, refusing to stay silent about what is happening, and sharing it all with the world.

It’s always enjoyable to watch social workers scatter like cockroaches when they see the light of public scrutiny exposing them!” 

—-

The next day, September 9th, 2020, the Shelter Care Hearing for Riley, in front of Commissioner Matthew Cluclas, was also Live Streamed on the support page. The entire family agrees that the behavior of Commissioner Clucas was very contrasting to the last time they were in front of him when he gave the order that Sophia and Sean could not use Marijuana, even for medical purposes. 

Jennifer Kilkenny, Sean’s mom, says,

“He ripped Sean to shreds last hearing. He was very rude and unprofessional. He also said I had no credibility unless I called my son a knucklehead. It was a totally different tune today. ”

Joni McDairmant, and the Assistant Attorney General on the case, Bret Smith, continued with the argument that the parents were not fit to have Riley returned because they both tested positive for Marijuana in a recent UA, and Sean had tested positive for alcohol. 

Caseworker Joni McDairmant. Image from Facebook.

The judge condemned the actions of CPS and Riley’s removal, although he didn’t send him home to his family like many feel he should.

Instead, Commissioner Clucas ordered that Riley be placed back in the care of Monica, his previous caretaker, or his paternal grandmother, by 1 p.m. that day.

Then he set a new hearing to discuss the parent’s progress with chemical dependency, treatment for marijuana and alcohol use, as well as traffic violations and other “concerns” the department says they still have about Riley going home to his parents.

Statements from the family’s support page give more detail about what happened:

https://www.facebook.com/108184074344398/posts/118591466636992/

“#Fight4ZandRiley Court Update – 👨‍⚖️ 

Commissioner Matthew Clucas had a completely different attitude today than the last time Sophia and Sean were in front of him! It’s amazing what public scrutiny can do for a court case. Thank you for all of your love & support! 💗

Today’s hearing went better than expected. CPS was chastised for removing Riley last Friday. The judge said it wasn’t “emergent” and that just because he “gave them the power to do something, doesn’t mean that it should have been done” – basically agreeing that CPS abused their authority to remove Riley.

But he still didn’t send Riley home, despite that if it wasn’t “emergent” on Friday, it still isn’t “emergent” today. Instead, he sent him back to his prior placement before his return home in July, with visitations guaranteed for both Sophia and Sean. A better place than foster care, but not as good as at home with his parents.

He also vacated his order from August 26th, regarding Medical Mariuana and Riley’s removal, but again, still DID NOT send Riley home to his parents. 😡

Additionally, chemical dependency treatment for Alcohol and Marijuana is still on the table – DESPITE ZERO INSTANCES THAT CAN BE VOCALIZED REGARDING HOW LEGAL MARIJUANA USE, OR EVEN LEGAL ALCOHOL USE, HAS IMPACTED THEIR ABILITY TO PARENT. #MarijuanaisSAFERthanCPS

The Department did their best job as usual to grasp at straws with which to attack the parents. Many lies were told, and vague “concerns” were raised that have absolutely nothing to do with either parents ability to parent. 😠

Court has been scheduled to reconvene in two weeks to clear up “safety concerns” addressed by the department, determine what steps the parents have taken to ensure Riley can come home, including re: Sean’s outstanding traffic tickets and lack of driver’s license, and participation in UAs and Chemical Dependency Treatment for Marijuana.

Weirdly, the judge was not visible on the video call, as he has been in the past and was during the case heard at the hearing directly before this one. 

Maybe he knew the world was watching! 🌎

We really appreciate the 77 people who were watching it all happen, and the 500+ views the hearing has since received. Thank you so much for your help in our fight to #SaveOurChildren from #KidnapCounty 

Court will reconvene on Sept. 23rd, with Commissioner Clucas, to discuss Riley’s continued out of home placement. Court support event can be found here – https://www.facebook.com/events/701625457099106/

If you haven’t signed the petition to return the boys home, please sign and share! www.change.org/fight4zandriley

If you can support the family by donating, please do! They can use all the help they can get! Court battles are definitely expensive.

www.fundrazr.com/fight4zandriley

Thank you for following the Fight for Z and Riley!

We couldn’t do this without the support of the community. 💙🧡💙

Much love and appreciation to you all! 💖”

—-

Although it isn’t exactly what Sean and Sophia wanted, which is the immediate return of their baby, essentially it was still a big win.

The department has not even asked for another FTDM. The family speculates that this is because Sophia refuses to not record the conversation and there is no need to determine placement when the court already ordered Riley placed with a suitable relative at Sophia’s motion.

After court, Sophia and Sean were anxious for when they would hear that their baby had arrived at their preferred placement with extended family.

However, Joni McDairmant refused to discuss anything through text and kept insisting Sophia call her to discuss it. Having learned better, Sophia refused unless the discussion was documented somehow.

Monica, a family friend and Riley’s caretaker for the first 7 months of his life while he was in “foster care,” met Joni and another social worker at the DCYF office at 1 p.m. to pick up Riley. 

She said,

“I basically snatched him from her hands, cried for a minute, and told him I was so sorry this happened to him; while she (Joni) and the other lady just stared at me and didn’t say a word.”

Once he was home with her, Monica says she noticed that Riley is really different from this experience. She said,

“Riley does not want to be put down and left by himself, which is not like him at all.”

Monica points out that Riley has always been an easy child and she’s never had problems putting him to bed.

“Now he screams, like terror screams. So I’ve just been rocking him to sleep. He won’t even stay in his bed. He wakes up several times, and every time I lay him down after he falls asleep, he wakes up and cries hard. So I just hold him in the recliner all night so he can sleep.”

Monica also said,

“He has been extremely cautious with several adults he’s been around his whole life. He seems scared and uncertain. This is not his normal personality. He’s had some very unhappy moments as well. I don’t understand how this (stay with strangers in foster care) has been helpful at all. He is very loved and cared for by a large group of family, especially his parents.”

Sophia says that once Riley was able to have his Peter Rabbit stuffy from his parents’ house, Monica told her that Riley finally started to feel a bit better.

The day after court, Sean and Sophia finally held their son in their arms once again. They say they arrived while Riley was sleeping so they just held and cuddled him. When he woke up a few minutes after they arrived, Sophia says he

“shot straight up out of the laying position and started looking around frantically like he was terrified. Monica said he has been doing that, but after he realized we were there he was a lot better. He ended up falling asleep on me and we cuddled for about 2 hours. Monica says he has slept a lot better since he saw us.”

Senator Nancy Schaefer once said,

“No child who emerges from the system can ever be sound or whole.”

The trauma caused by being forcefully separated from your family as a small child is unimaginable, and poor Riley was obviously affected. It is also terrifying for his parents to not know exactly what happened, or who Riley was with for 5 whole days. The statistics of physical and sexual abuse in foster care are sickening and the thought of not knowing who has your child is petrifying.

Foster care is much more dangerous than the non-toxic Medical Cannabis that Riley’s parents use as treatment for their medical conditions. The family agrees this never should have happened to Riley, especially when Monica was available the entire time, and holding him in her arms when the social workers came to take him away.

Sophia knows she has a long road ahead of her fighting by herself in court, but is grateful she doesn’t feel so alone anymore, despite firing her attorney. 

She says,

“I am very excited and hopeful about moving forward. The public support has been absolutely amazing and the scrutiny has been on point. I feel like we’ve made a huge impact in our case and just in a week.

I really wish I would have known how much this would have worked so I could have started this from the beginning. I feel alot better about firing my attorney, as I feel like there  is another person away from trying to work against me.”

The social worker, Joni McDairmant, has also since been removed from the case. A new social worker, Desiree Hovland, has been assigned, along with a new supervisor on the case.

Sophia hopes that with a new caseworker things will start changing quickly in both of her sons’ cases; and that maybe this woman can look at this family with different eyes. Sean and Sophia say they appreciate all of the support they’ve received and hope that the community will continue to support their fight to bring their boys home for good.

👇HOW YOU CAN HELP: 👇

👉 Family Support Page – Fight for Z and Riley

👉 #Fight4ZandRiley

👉 Change.org petition – www.change.org/fight4ZandRiley

👉 Donation Account – www.fundrazr.com/fight4ZandRiley

👉 Contact Everyone:

Washington Governor Jay Inslee: https://www.governor.wa.gov/contact/contact/send-gov-inslee-e-message

Office of the Governor
PO Box 40002
Olympia, WA 98504-0002
Phone: 360-902-4111

Bremerton Mayor Greg Wheeler
345 6th Street Suite 600
Bremerton, WA 98337
Phone: 360-473-5266

Washington Legislators:

Representative Dan Griffey: https://app.leg.wa.gov/pbc/memberEmail/35/1
PO Box 40600
Olympia, WA 98504

(360) 786 – 7966

Senator Tim Sheldon: https://app.leg.wa.gov/pbc/memberEmail/35/0
PO Box 40435
Olympia, WA 98504
(360) 786 – 7668
Fax: (360) 786 – 1999

Senator Patty Murray: https://www.murray.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/mobile/contactme

Senator Maria Cantwell: https://www.cantwell.senate.gov/contact

Representative Derek Kilmer: https://kilmer.house.gov/contact/email-me

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