Amish couple sues Trumbull County Children Services
By Ed Runyan
An Amish couple who adopted the biological daughter of a couple convicted of raping her at the Trumbull County Children Services offices on Reeves Road in 2011, has sued the agency and three workers.
The lawsuit, filed in Trumbull County Common Pleas Court by Atty. Michael D. Rossi, doesn’t name the parents, who live in West Farmington. They are listed as Jane Doe and John Doe.
But the lawsuit names three employees that it says are responsible for the decision to allow the girl to receive partially unsupervised visits with her biological parents starting in January 2011.
At that time, the agency decided that workers could check in on the visits about every 15 minutes, even though the baby’s biological father, Cody Beemer, had been convicted of raping a 3-year-old when Beemer was a teenager. The visits lasted until September 2011, when the rapes were discovered on a cellphone video the Beemers had made.
The suit says Jessica Watkins was the case worker in charge of the child’s case starting in January 2011 and that Robin Moon and Marilyn Pape were the supervisors on the case.
The lawsuit seeks financial damages of $3 million for the child as a result of the decision to allow Cody Beemer, along with the child’s biological mother, Felicia Beemer, to have visits with her that were not constantly supervised.
The decision led to Cody Beemer and Felicia Beemer repeatedly raping the child during visits, the lawsuit said. The girl was less than a year old at the time.
Tim Schaffner, Children Services director since early 2012, said the rapes were “a tragic event,” that the Beemers received life prison sentences, that there were investigations by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services and Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation, that no charges were brought against employees and that the agency made positive changes to its visitation area.
“We work in the legal setting every day, and we trust it will do its job,” Schaffner said.
Moon was suspended without pay for two weeks in December 2011 for information she entered into a statewide database regarding the child’s case file Oct. 6 and 7, 2011.
A report from the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation said Moon wrote information into the database based on her memory of the case and not from “physical notes.”