Months after a teenage boy left Mary Doe’s care, an allegation was made that the boy had inappropriately touched a toddler. DHS (Hennepin County) issued a Temporary Immediate Suspension. The matter went to hearing. Because the case was “still under investigation,” the County did not come forward with evidence showing “reasonable cause” to believe the children in Ms. Doe’s care were at risk. The Administrative Law Judge recommended rescinding the TIS. The Commissioner agreed.
Thereafter, DHS affirmed Child Protection’s determination that Ms. Doe was guilty of neglect. During the two days of hearing, the County put on evidence from witnesses from CornerHouse, law enforcement and licensing in an attempt to prove that Ms. Doe must not have appropriately supervised the children in order for this inappropriate touching to have occurred.
Try as they may, however, they were unable to establish what day the touching occurred, what time the touching occurred, where in the home or yard the touching occurred, where Ms. Doe was in relation to the kids when the touching occurred, and so on. There was simply no evidence upon which a determination of “lack of supervision” could be based.
The DHS Appeals Judge agreed and reversed the finding of neglect. The Commissioner affirmed.