|
Acting Director Marc Smith appears on “Chicago Tonight.”

Illinois Department of Children and Family Services has faced troubles for years. Acting Director Marc Smith talks about issues facing the state’s child welfare agency.

|
A memorial of flowers, balloons, a cross and photo of Marlen Ochoa-Lopez are displayed on the lawn, Friday, May 17, 2019 in Chicago, outside the home where Ochoa-Lopez was murdered last month. (AP Photo / Teresa Crawford)

Police and Illinois’ child welfare agency say staff at a Chicago-area hospital didn’t alert them after determining that a bloodied woman who arrived with a gravely ill newborn had not just given birth to the baby boy, as she claimed.

|
In this May 13, 2019 photo, Dana Weiner, policy fellow at Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago, discusses a review of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services’ Intact Family Services program, during a press event at DCFS. (Ashlee Rezin/Sun Times via AP)

Illinois’ child welfare agency is so intent on keeping children with their parents even when they have strong evidence of abuse that it has sometimes left those children in grave danger, a study released Wednesday found.

|
JoAnn Cunningham, left, and Andrew Freund Sr. have each been charged in the murder of their 5-year-old son, Andrew "AJ" Freund. A criminal complaint filed Thursday, April 25, 2019, outlines first-degree murder, aggravated battery and several other charges against the couple. A judge set bail at $5 million for each parent. (McHenry County Sheriff's Department via AP)

JoAnn Cunningham and Andrew Freund Sr. of Crystal Lake appeared in McHenry County court Friday, the day after a 30-page grand jury indictment was handed down in the case.

|
(Meagan Davis / Wikimedia Commons)

Illinois lawmakers on Tuesday took aim at the state’s Department of Children and Family Services, which has been haunted for decades by deaths wrought of abuse and neglect.

|
This undated photo provided by the Crystal Lake, Illinois Police Department shows Andrew “AJ” Freund. (Crystal Lake Police Department via AP)

JoAnn Cunningham and Andrew Freund Sr.’s younger son was taken into Illinois Department of Children and Family Services custody following the disappearance of Andrew “AJ” Freund. 

|
This undated photo provided by the Crystal Lake, Illinois Police Department shows Andrew “AJ” Freund. (Crystal Lake Police Department via AP)

The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services had multiple contacts with Freund's family over reports of neglect and abuse in the months and years before the 5-year-old was found dead.

|
Mourners gather outside the home of 5-year-old Andrew "AJ" Freund for a vigil Wednesday, April 24, 2019, in Crystal Lake, Ill. Andrew's body was found in a wooded area in Woodstock Wednesday, and the boy's parents have been charged with his murder. (John J. Kim/Chicago Tribune via AP)

Police believe the Illinois couple killed 5-year-old Andrew “AJ” Freund by beating him and forcing him to stand in a cold shower for an extended period of time.

|
This undated photo provided by the Crystal Lake, Illinois Police Department shows Andrew “AJ” Freund. (Crystal Lake Police Department via AP)

Crystal Lake police Chief James Black said at a news conference Wednesday that police dug up what they believe is Andrew “AJ” Freund’s body in a field and that it was wrapped in plastic.

|
JoAnn Cunningham, mother of missing 5-year-old child Andrew “AJ” Freund, stands with her attorney George Kililis outside of the Freund home as he speaks on her behalf and pleads with the public to help find AJ on Friday, April 19, 2019 in Crystal Lake. (Stacey Wescott / Chicago Tribune via AP)

The mother of a 5-year-old suburban Chicago boy who went missing last week is refusing to cooperate with detectives, police said Monday.

|
Plaintiff Burl F. speaks to the media about the class-action lawsuit on Dec. 13, 2018.

A new lawsuit claims DCFS is keeping Illinois children in psych wards beyond medical necessity. We hear from the plaintiff in that case.

|
(inspiri / Pixabay)

In a class-action lawsuit, the state’s child welfare agency is accused of keeping children confined to psychiatric hospitals beyond their discharge dates because it doesn’t have the necessary facilities to house them.

|

Beverly Walker, acting director of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, talks about running the controversial agency charged with protecting Illinois’ children. 

|

George Sheldon’s departure comes as he faces an ongoing ethics probe involving contracts and DCFS is under fire for its handling of the Semaj Crosby case. 

|

Maryville Academy started nearly 133 years ago as an orphanage, but as a result of major cuts in funding, the agency announced it will no longer house children. We speak with Maryville's executive director about the changes and organization's new direction.

|

In the wake of the Penn State scandal, we talk about whistle-blowing on child sex abuse in Illinois, and possible ramifications that could result.

randomness