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Sex Allegations Eliminated

January 4, 2008 permalink

When teenager Jacqueline Moyra Wood complained of sexual abuse in foster care, Australian child protectors knew what to do with her — they put her in a home full of strange boys full of hormones. The cited "pressure to drop allegations" may mean that the placement was to keep her under duress until she relented. She killed herself.



Suicide girl's abuse pressure

A TEENAGE girl who took an overdose of paracetamol while under pressure to drop sex abuse allegations, should never have been placed with a foster family containing males, an inquest has been told.

Emeritus Professor Freda Briggs told an inquest investigating the death of Jacqueline Moyra Wood, 17, that Families SA should not have placed the ward of the state with a household containing males, given allegations she was sexually abused.

Professor Briggs' opinions were referred to in findings handed down yesterday by State Coroner Mark Johns after an inquest investigating Ms Wood's death. Ms Wood died at Flinders Medical Centre on June 9, 2002, after taking an overdose of paracetamol.

The inquest heard she had been under pressure from family to withdraw sexual abuse allegations against a foster carer. The allegations were vigorously denied.

Mr Johns said no criticism should be directed at Families SA staff for failing to predict Ms Wood might be suicidal.

Source: Adelaide Advertiser (Australia)