On Monday, February 25, 2019 around 10:30pm, Chandler officers were dispatched to the 1600 block of West Marlboro Drive to conduct a welfare check, at the request of the Department of Child Safety, on a two-year-old child who was suffering a potentially life-threatening fever and illness. The parents of the child allegedly refused to take their child to the emergency room after being instructed to do so by a physician earlier in the evening.
At the home, officers could hear a child coughing and other voices inside. The parents initially refused all attempts at contact. The father, during a brief telephone conversation with officers, said the child was fine and told the police to leave. While on scene, DCS obtained a court order for the temporary custody of the two-year-old child. The parents continued to ignore all attempts from DCS and officers to speak with them on the telephone or at the front door.
After consultation with detectives from the Chandler Police Department’s Special Victims Unit, the residents were given a final opportunity to exit and take their child to the hospital. Upon their failure to do so, the front door was breached by patrol officers (NOT SWAT) and the family members were called out of the residence. Inside the residence, two additional children (aged four and six) were located who were also suffering similar symptoms to include vomiting. DCS also took temporary custody of the two additional children.
Two of the children were transported to the hospital by ambulance, while the third was transported by DCS. The two-year-old was later admitted to the hospital. The Department’s Special Victims Unit conducted a follow-up investigation and found probable cause to charge each parent with one count of Child Abuse (13-3623B1).
The court order and actions of Chandler Officers fulfilled the requirements of Arizona Revised Statute 8-821.