Infant Removed From Occupy Dallas Camp
By Bill Zeeble, KERA News
Dallas, TX – State child welfare officials say they have taken a 9-month-old boy from his homeless parents at an Occupy Dallas camp. KERA's Bill Zeeble witnessed yesterday's event and has more.
On a sunny, cold late Thursday morning, a Dallas Police Crisis Intervention van pulled into a nearby parking lot next to the Occupy Dallas camp. Officers were seeking parents and their child who had reportedly been crying day and night.
The father told KERA and others the baby was well cared for and he had done nothing wrong. As temperatures threatened to drop near freezing, he said the tent even had a space heater.
Father: They're taking us downtown to the CPS office to decide what our situation is and what' they're going to do about it. Whether our baby is coming back here with us here or not I have no idea.
Dallas Police Commander Anthony Williams says Occupy campers complained about a crying child. So police called CPS then sent its Crisis Intervention team for the family.
Williams: On this case the complaint came from within the camp. So we wanted to make sure the folks with Dallas Occupy knew we were doing everything within our means to be responsible for their welfare.
Child Protective Services spokeswoman Marissa Gonzales says the baby was taken into state custody and CPS was interviewing his parents. She declined to release more details until a judge signs off on the case.
A spokesman for Occupy Dallas, Cordell Cameron, says the homeless parents, who had joined demonstrators about a week ago, were "pretty devastated." He said they were in the process of trying to find housing through a family program but feared they would no longer be eligible.