Phoenix, arizona -- Warnings missed in girl's death
Warnings missed in girl's death
Jun. 4, 2008 12:00 AM
In the last months of her brief life, it was as if Trenay Duchane didn't
She and her sister Treshae were no longer allowed to go to school. They
were never seen outside the one-bedroom apartment they shared with their
father, stepmother and baby sister.
Child Protective Services had long since lost track of the family, and
those who suspected that something was wrong kept quiet.
No one put the pieces together until it was too late. Now Trenay is
gone, and I'm told Treshae will never be the same.
Torture can do that to a little girl.
The case drew headlines in November when police say 12-year-old Trenay
was ordered into scalding water, then beaten to death and left for days
in that tiny apartment with her traumatized little sister. By the time
police were called, Trenay's body was decomposing and 9-year-old Treshae
was cowering in the bathtub, covered in bruises, burns and assorted
other injuries, both fresh and festering.
A Phoenix cop told me it was one of the worst cases of homicide he'd
seen in his 24 years. In a state where a child is beaten to death every
six days, that is saying something.
The father and stepmother, Jeffery Duchane and Reiko Troupe, await trial
on charges of murder and child abuse.
Could we have done something to protect Trenay and Treshae? This
newspaper went to court in search of an answer to that question. The
records, ordered released by Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Crane
McClennen, show that CPS lost track of the family a year before Trenay
died and that officials at the last school the girls attended failed to
recognize the signs of abuse, signs that were there had they just opened
CPS first encountered the girls in 2005 and again in 2006 while
investigating reports that the children were being neglected when living
with their mother. Caseworkers found insufficient evidence of neglect,
but they did offer help - furniture and rent money and bus tickets and
such. By August 2006, the mother was unable to care for all five of her
children, and the two oldest, Trenay and Treshae, moved in with their
father and stepmother.
Troupe, then 25, was also known to CPS. The agency had twice been called
upon to protect her when she was a child and had twice found
insufficient evidence of a problem.
In the summer of 2006, Troupe was again under the watchful eye of CPS,
this time as an adult who had just given birth to a meth-exposed baby.
Here again, CPS found no evidence of neglect but set her up with the
non-profit Family Builders to get help with parenting, substance abuse
and depression. Social workers reported that the girls had a good
rapport with Troupe, who they called "an attentive and affectionate parent."
Within two weeks of Trenay and Treshae showing up, however, the family
broke off contact. After a month of trying to reconnect, Family Builders
returned the case to CPS, noting that Troupe had met none of the goals
set for her.
A CPS caseworker, finding all phone numbers disconnected, sent Troupe a
certified letter: "You have till October 14, 2006, before 5 p.m. to get
in touch with me. Before further actions will be made concerning your
Three days later, CPS closed the case and walked away.
The girls, meanwhile, apparently continued to live in the same apartment
and were enrolled in nearby Solano Elementary School for the 2006-07
In November 2006, the family moved, and Treshae would later say that
this was when the abuse began: the beatings with a knotted electrical
cord or a fist; the burnings with an iron or hot water; the bites; the
broken arm that nobody bothered to see about, leaving Treshae's left arm
Treshae said her father told her that day to "stop being a baby." She
was 8 at the time.
School records indicate that the girls were frequently absent and Solano
dropped Treshae from its rolls in April 2007, noting that the
second-grader's status was unknown.
Jean Richards, a spokeswoman for the Osborn School District, said the
state requires schools to drop a child after an absence of 10 days,
though she said that someone from Solano would have gone over to the
apartment to investigate.
"We would have gone out," she said. "We have family or parent liaisons.
A parent liaison would have gone out with someone else . . . and made a
home visit to see if somebody was physically living there."
If they did, it's not in the school records released by the judge.
Meanwhile, Trenay twice turned up that same spring with both eyes
blackened, once the same week her sister was being dropped from the
rolls. Trenay explained her injuries away as a car accident and a fight
with other kids. Instead of calling CPS, the school called relatives who
confirmed the stories.
Richards said school officials would have called CPS had they been
suspicious. The fact that they didn't, coupled with Treshae's sudden
disappearance and Trenay's frequent absences, is a tragedy. A family
member would later tell police that the phone calls from the school
scared Troupe, who then would keep the girls home.
There is nothing in state law, however, that requires a school to notify
anyone when a child suddenly disappears.
There should be.
Attorney Jorge Franco, who has reviewed the records on behalf of Treshae
and her mother, says he believes Trenay and Treshae might have been
saved had the state's child-abuse reporting laws covered excessive absences.
"Had they been required to pick up the phone, then they would have put
CPS back on the trail," he said.
Instead, the trail vanished.
By August, the family had been evicted and moved again, but the girls
were never seen outside the apartment. They didn't return to Solano, and
no other school requested their records.
"I don't go to school," Treshae would later tell police. "My mom teaches
me at home. She said it was better."
This from a child covered head to toe in injuries, one who told police
she and her sister were beaten every day. Until November 6.
On that day, according to police, Trenay Cheire Duchane, age 12,
committed the fatal mistake of messing up her room.
Treshae told police that her sister was ordered into a tub of scalding
water. Treshae told police she heard her sister screaming as she tried
to escape. Trenay was then whipped with the knotted electrical cord and
pushed against the wall and punched in the face until she passed out.
By the time Duchane got home from work that evening, his daughter was
dead or dying. It took four days before he called 911 and then only
because her body was beginning to smell.
Such is the sort of love and support shown to too darned many children
in this state
Police found Treshae cowering in the bathtub behind the shower curtain
and Trenay, long gone, in the bedroom she had shared with her sister.
Next to her body were pages from a notebook, filled with a child's
handwriting. Over and over, the same words were written, about 100 times.
"I will listen to my mom."
Reach Roberts at
or 602-444-8635. Read her blog at
An Inconvenient Truth about Child Protective Services, Foster care, and
the Child Protection "INDUSTRY"
Child Protective Services Does not protect children...
It is sickening how many children are subject to abuse, neglect and even
killed at the hands of CPS.
every parent should read the free handbook from
connecticut dcf watch...
Number of Cases per 100,000 children in the US
These numbers come from The National Center on
Child Abuse and Neglect in Washington. (NCCAN)
Recent numbers have increased significantly for CPS
Perpetrators of Maltreatment
Physical Abuse CPS/Foster care 160, biological Parents 59
Sexual Abuse CPS/Foster care 112, biological Parents 13
Neglect CPS/Foster care 410, biological Parents 241
Medical Neglect CPS/Foster care 14 biological Parents 12
Fatalities CPS/Foster care 6.4, biological Parents 1.5
Imagine that, 6.4 children die at the hands of the very agencies that
are supposed to protect them and only 1.5 at the hands of parents per
100,000 children. CPS perpetrates more abuse, neglect, and sexual abuse
and kills more children then parents in the United States. If the
citizens of this country hold CPS to the same standards that they hold
parents too. No judge should ever put another child in the hands of ANY
government agency because CPS nationwide is guilty of more harm and
death than any human being combined. CPS nationwide is guilty of more
human rights violations and deaths of children then the homes from which
they were removed. When are the judges going to wake up and see that
they are sending children to their death and a life of abuse when
children are removed from safe homes based on the mere opinion of a
bunch of social workers.
THIS IS AMERICA'S HIDDEN HOLOCAUST
Currently Child Protective Services violates more constitutionally
guaranteed liberties & civil rights on a daily basis then all other
agencies combined, Including the National Security agency/Central
intelligence agency wiretaping programs…
THE CORRUPT BUSINESS OF CHILD PROTECTIVE SERVICES
BY: Nancy Schaefer Senator, 50th District of Georgia
This is Child Protection?
By Gregory A. Hession, J.D.
Mercenary Motherhood: "Memoirs of a Babystealer."
FOSTER CARE IS A 80 PERCENT FAILU. A Brief Analysis of the Casey
Family Programs. Northwest Foster Care Alumni Study. By Richard Wexler
HOW THE WAR AGAINST CHILD ABUSE BECAME A WAR AGAINST CHILDREN
Adoption Bonuses: The Money Behind the Madness
DSS and affiliates rewarded for breaking up families
By Nev Moore Massachusetts News
A recent study has found that 12-18 months after leaving foster ca
30% of the nation’s homeless are former foster children.
27% of the males and 10% of the females had been incarcerated
33% were receiving public assistance
37% had not finished high school
2% receive a college degree
50% were unemployed
Children in foster care are three to six times more likely than children
not in care to have emotional, behavioral and developmental problems,
including conduct disorders, depression, difficulties in school and
impaired social relationships. Some experts estimate that about 30% of
the children in care have marked or severe emotional problems. Various
studies have indicated that children and young people in foster care
tend to have limited education and job skills, perform poorly in school
compared to children who are not in foster care, lag behind in their
education by at least one year, and have lower educational attainment
than the general population.
*Casey Family Programs National Center for Resource Family Support
80 percent of prison inmates have been through the foster care system.
The highest ranking federal official in charge of foster care, Wade Horn
of the Department of Health and Human Services, is a former child
psychologist who says the foster care system is a giant mess and should
just be blown up.
Four rigorous studies have found that at least 30 percent of America’s
foster children could be home right now if their parents had decent housing.
This study found thousands of children already in foster care who would
have done better had child protection agencies not taken them away in
the first place.
Front-page story in USA Today.
Read the studies online.
Casey "alumni" study: "Improving Family Foster Ca Findings from the
Northwest Foster Care Alumni Study,"
MIT study: "Child Protection and Child Outcomes: Measuring the Effects
of Foster Care,"
Texas comptroller's "Forgotten Children" reports:
The bottom line? - Child Protective Services and the Foster Care system
for the most part turns out young adults that are nothing more than
CURRENTLY CHILD PROTECTIVE SERVICES VIOLATES MORE CONSTITUTIONALLY
GUARANTEED LIBERTIES & CIVIL RIGHTS ON A DAILY BASIS THEN ALL OTHER
AGENCIES COMBINED INCLUDING THE NATIONAL SECURITY AGENCY/CENTRAL
INTELLIGENCE AGENCY WIRETAPPING PROGRAMS....
CHILD PROTECTIVE SERVICES, HAPPILY DESTROYING THOUSANDS OF INNOCENT
FAMILIES YEARLY NATIONWIDE AND COMING TO YOU'RE HOME SOON...
BE SURE TO FIND OUT WHERE YOUR CANDIDATES STANDS ON THE ISSUE OF
REFORMING OR ABOLISHING CHILD PROTECTIVE SERVICES ("MAKE YOUR CANDIDATES
TAKE A STAND ON THIS ISSUE.") THEN REMEMBER TO VOTE ACCORDINGLY IF THEY
ARE "FAMILY UNFRIENDLY" IN THE NEXT ELECTION...
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