The grandmother of the Lawrenceville girl whose parents are charged with starving her to death then burning her body and stuffing it into a trash can said the system failed the 10-year-old.
“My baby went through hell,” said paternal grandmother Robin Moss, who raised Emani. Moss said after Emani told her she was being abused, her son and his new wife kept the girl away from her.
Gwinnett police confirm as much.
“Detectives believe the victim was isolated from people outside of her family in the weeks before her death,” said Gwinnett police spokesman Cpl. Jake Smith. “She did not attend school outside the home during this school year; she did attend public school during prior school years. This aspect of the case is still under investigation.”
Robin Moss’ lawyer told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution his client urged child welfare officials to investigate her suspicions that Emani was being abused but was turned away.
‘They kept dropping the ball,” said attorney Mike Jones.
Division of Family and Children Services officials released a statement late Tuesday announcing that it will investigate the way it handled Emani’s case, as well as the case of 12-year-old Eric Forbes.
Forbes, who allegedly had physical signs of severe child abuse, died last month. His father, Shayaa Yusef Forbes, is charged with murder.
“The Department of Human Services Division of Family and Children Services and the Department of Human Services Office of Inspector General will continue to investigate the agency’s involvement in the lives of these two children, and DFCS’ actions after every report of abuse will be under the toughest scrutiny,” the statement said. “As we review actions in those specific cases, we are constantly working to improve how we ascertain our goals of protecting Georgia’s children.”
More on this story in tomorrow’s AJC and online at myajc.com.