Police Knock Down Family’s Door And Take Kids In Overnight Raid

In Chandler, Arizona, the Arizona Department of Child Safety (DCS) and the local police faced criticism after conducting an overnight raid on a family's home. The incident occurred because a 2-year-old unvaccinated toddler had a high fever. The child's mother initially took him to a clinic due to concerns about meningitis but changed her mind about going to the hospital when his condition improved. She informed the doctor that her son was better and expressed fears about DCS involvement due to his vaccination status, but she was reassured.

When the hospital notified the doctor that the child did not arrive, and the mother didn't answer her phone, the doctor contacted DCS, which then requested a welfare check. The police arrived at the family's home but were refused entry by the parents. Subsequently, a temporary custody order was obtained, justifying the forced entry into the home. Surveillance footage released by the father showed officers breaking down the door with guns drawn, causing outrage as such force is typically reserved for violent criminals.

No criminal incidents were found, and neither parent was arrested. However, DCS obtained temporary custody orders for the sick child's siblings, who were placed in separate foster care homes while their grandparents were evaluated as potential caregivers. The parents were required to undergo psychological evaluations and complete a reunification plan before their children could be returned. Advocates and legislators criticized the handling of the case, questioning the extent of control given to doctors and DCS over parental decision-making. The incident sparked concern about the trauma experienced by the children and the use of force for a non-criminal situation.

State Representative Kelly Townsend expressed dismay over the government's intervention based solely on a fever disagreement between parents and a doctor. Lori Ford, a member of an oversight group for DCS, stated that the agency had no right to enter the family's home and take their children, especially considering the child's improved condition at the hospital. The incident raised concerns about parental rights and the potential overreach of authorities in similar cases.

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