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Failure to Snitch
January 2, 2009 permalink
When Pennsylvania Dr Lekgobo Chimidza examined infant Zaraiyah Mitchell in January, she found bruises and a bite mark, but did not report the injuries to child protectors. The baby girl died in May allegedly at the hands of her parents. The doctor has now been charged with a crime for not reporting.
There is a good chance that if this child had been removed from her parents she would be alive today. Child protectors take advantage of opportunities like this to terrorize mandated reporters, generate favorable publicity and stir up hatred. Here is a reader comment to another story on this same case:
Posted by MrsMP on 12/31/08 at 10:00PM
I hope they give her life in prison.... she might have saved this child's life, but she turned a blind eye to the abuse.
Caution. Sometimes hateful comments like this are posted by social workers hiding behind internet anonymity.
As long as the press prints these stories while suppressing most deaths in foster care, readers are being misled. Foster care is ten times as hazardous as parental care, and in general reporting children to child protectors is as helpful as reporting Jews to the Gestapo.
Doctor to be tried on failing to report abuse
Friday, January 02, 2009, BY MONICA VON DOBENECK, Of Our Lebanon County Bureau
LEBANON - The trial is to start Monday for Dr. Lekgobo Chimidza, a pediatrician charged with failing to report suspicions of child abuse in the death of 6-month-old Zaraiyah Mitchell in May.
Zaraiyah's parents, Kevin Mitchell, 21, and Miriam Nebot, 21, of Lebanon, have been charged with homicide in her death.
Chimidza, 50, a doctor with Good Samaritan Pediatrics, examined the baby in January, noting she had bruises and a bite mark, according to prosecutors. She did not report suspicions of abuse to the state, officials said.
State law requires certain professionals, including doctors, to report suspected child abuse. The law exempts them from the usual doctor-patient confidentiality laws in those cases and relieves them of liability if they are sued because of their allegations.
Anyone may report suspicions of child abuse to the state's ChildLine: 800-932-0313.
MONICA VON DOBENECK: 832-2090 or email@example.com
Source: The Patriot-News
Addendum: Sanity prevails.
Lebanon doctor found not guilty of failing to report child abuse
Posted by mvondobe March 05, 2009 19:02PM
A Lebanon jury found pediatrician Lekgobo Chimidza not guilty today of failing to report child abuse after about three hours of deliberation.
Prosecutors said Chimidza, 50, a doctor with Good Samaritan Pediatrics, should have reported to authorities when two-month-old Zaraiyah Mitchell showed up at her office Jan. 15, 2008, with bruises on her cheeks and a bite mark on her thigh.
Four months later, Zaraiyah was dead, and her parents, Kevin Mitchell and Miriam Nebot, are charged with homicide in her death. Their trial is scheduled for April.
Lebanon County District Attorney Dave Arnold said Zaraiyah's parents also had a history of missing doctor's appointments and that a social worker had targeted the family for being "at-risk." Chimidza said she never saw the documents saying the family was at risk.
Chimidza told the jury she never suspected child abuse because she believed Nebot's explanations. Nebot, who took the stand today, said Zaraiyah got the bruises on her cheeks because her father would suck on her cheeks while kissing her. She said the bite came from a 2-year-old toddler.
The trial in Lebanon was unusual. While certain people, including doctors, teachers and police officers, are mandated by law to report suspected child abuse, charges for violating the law are rare.
Source: The Patriot-News