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Engler to sue Trumbull CSB on behalf of alleged rape victim

Published: Wed, January 25, 2012 @ 12:09 a.m.

By Ed Runyan



Atty. David Engler says the appointment of a guardian for the child reportedly raped during a visit at Trumbull County Children Services last April will make it possible for him to sue the agency on the child’s behalf.

On Tuesday, Judge Thomas A. Swift of Trumbull County Probate Court overruled objections raised by attorneys for Children Services and said he would appoint Atty. John Rossi to serve as guardian.

Engler said he expects to file suit against the agency in about a week in an attempt to recover damages from the agency for failing to protect her.

A Children Services attorney told Judge Swift that Ohio law doesn’t give the judge jurisdiction to appoint a guardian because the Trumbull County Family/Juvenile Court had jurisdiction first.

Engler said the family court has jurisdiction only over custody of the child, which is different from what Engler was seeking Tuesday — appointment of someone to serve as guardian over the child’s estate in the event that legal action on her behalf generates any money.

Engler was representing Loretta Banks, grandmother of the alleged rape victim, in Tuesday’s hearing.

The child is now 18 months old and living in foster care.

He also represents Banks in action filed in October that asks Family Court to grant Banks temporary custody of the girl so she has “standing” to ask family court to transfer custody of the girl from Trumbull Children Services to a children-services agency in another county.

In a related matter, an attorney representing Cody Beemer of Warren, one of two people accused of raping the girl, asked a judge Tuesday to allow a second psychological evaluation at a cost of up to $3,000.

The Forensic Center of Northeast Ohio conducted one evaluation to determine whether Beemer was sane at the time of the alleged offense and whether he is competent to stand trial.

Though the results of the evaluation were not made public Tuesday during a pretrial hearing in Trumbull County Common Pleas Court, observers said it’s apparent the evaluation deemed Beemer sane and competent to stand trial or his attorney would not have asked for another evaluation.

In another related matter, Brian J. Harclerode, who worked four years as a Children Services caseworker, resigned Jan. 17 after admitting he was the person who wrote an email to Engler’s Internet blog April 6.

According to the Canfield Police Department, which investigated the matter because Engler’s daughter received the message at Engler’s Canfield home, the message started out, “Sir, I am asking you politely to stop. I’ll only ask once. If you continue, please be aware that the public will know of all your ‘transgressions.’”

The message arrived the day after Engler argued in Trumbull County Common Pleas Court on behalf of clients claiming their right to attend a public meeting of the Children Services Board was violated by a requirement that they put their name on a sign-in sheet.

Engler filed a complaint with police, saying the message was threatening.

Canfield police said Harclerode told them he didn’t intend to threaten Engler and “admitted to making a poor decision.”

After Harclerode resigned, Engler agreed to drop his complaint.


1ipaidattention(68 comments)posted 4 years, 6 months ago

engler would sue viagra for not working as well as the rush he gets from frivolous lawsuits and wasting existence, and watching himself lose elections. What a waste. The epitome of a sleezebag lawyer.

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2AtownParent(565 comments)posted 4 years, 6 months ago

This is such a joke. If the grandmother was fit, she would have had custody of this child. She obviously is not and should have no rights whatsoever when it comes to the welfare of the child. That baby needs to be adopted as far away from the whole family as they can possibly get.

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3dls44471(6 comments)posted 4 years, 6 months ago

This whole situation is horrible for both parties, that being the children involved and CSB! I am torn with everything that is going on with CSB at this point. I previously was one of them children in the custody of CSB and I want to say, if it weren't for them I would not be the person that I am today! They took me from a bad situation and made it right and taught me right. With these little children, first the 21 month old killed by her foster parent, it amazes me since in order to adopt and foster you go through so much rigorous training and so many classes and evaluations. The Bonnie woman must have been very good at something or turned to drug. Since it is relay honestly all a mystery as to why she did it! As far as the Banks-Beemer baby that poor child. I feel for it. I cannot fathom why a person including parents would ever want to hurt their own child in such a way. Felicia had a record with children services and should have never been able to procreate again to begin with!
The grandmother on the Banks side is in no better condition to take the child either, if that were the case then she would have had her before all this was allowed to happen to this child! I personally think that the baby should be moved to an entirely different area and be available for adoption with a family that has a proven track record with adoptions and their own children. The baby needs a chance at a good life and placing it back into the family isn't the best idea.

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4Aboutime(1 comment)posted 4 years, 6 months ago

Wake up Warren! Yes, CSB has done some amazing work, however; they've also made a lot of HUGE mistakes over the years. It's about time that someone has the guts to stand up to these corrupt and incompetent so called law abiding organization. When you do something wrong, there are repercussions. It's just that this may really open the public to what's really been going on for years. I'm sure there are many stories of people out there, maybe not so exact, but I've heard SO many stories of CSB hurting and destroying other families with their flawed practice. Kudos to Engler! It's time Warren people stand up and take back their city!

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