Couple whose baby was taken by DCFS wins suit against city
By Steve Schmadeke | Chicago Tribune reporter
July 4, 2008
A federal jury in Chicago awarded $4.2 million Thursday to a West Side
couple whose infant was taken into protective custody for more than 8
months after two Chicago detectives allegedly "lied" to state
investigators, the couple's attorney said.
The city denied that the two officers had acted improperly and argued
that their actions played no role in the decision by the Department of
Children and Family Services to place the 6-month-old girl in foster
care, according to a Law Department spokeswoman. She said the city is
disappointed with the verdict and reviewing its legal options.
On Nov. 15, 2005, the owner of an in-home day-care center called Jose L.
Duran and his wife, Evelyn Torres, to report that their 6-month-old
daughter was crying uncontrollably, according to the couple's 2006
lawsuit. Hospital X-rays revealed their firstborn child had two broken
arms, according to the complaint.
DCFS launched an investigation and contacted Chicago police. The suit
states that the two detectives investigating the case incorrectly
administered polygraph tests to the parents and then did not fully
disclose the results to DCFS. Torres was given the exam in English
although she requested Spanish and her attorneys argued that the police
withheld other information, leading DCFS to place the child in
Their child was returned in September 2006 after prosectors dropped
their petition to declare the girl a ward of the state. Jurors
deliberated for about 12 hours before returning the verdict Thursday
afternoon, the couple's attorney said. The child, now 3, was awarded
$2.5 million. Her parents were awarded $850,000 as were the family's