Five-year-old Massachusetts boy Jeremiah Oliver was last seen by relatives on Sept. 14, but was only reported missing last week. According to a MassLive.com Dec. 20, 2013 report, police are investigating Jeremiah’s disappearance as a possible homicide.
CNN notes Jeremiah was supposed to be receiving monthly visits from a social worker assigned to the family due to reports of child abuse.
Olga Roche, the commissioner of the Massachusetts Dept. of Children and Families told CNN that the social worker had not been conducting “required in-person… checks on the family.”
The social worker has since been fired, along with the social worker’s supervisor.
CNN reports the last interaction the social worker had with Jeremiah was in May, as in July, the social worker was told the child had moved to Florida to live with his grandmother, which was not verified, according to Alec Loftus, a spokesperson for the state's DCF.
He noted that in November, the social worker left a business card at the home and on Dec. 2.
Jeremiah’s 8-year-old sister told school counselors just days later that Sierra, her mother's boyfriend, had abused her, according to a police statement, prompting authorities to remove the girl and her brother – not Jeremiah – from the home.
When authorities questioned Oliver on Jeremiah’s whereabouts, she said he moved to Florida, according to CNN. However, on Dec. 13 during a hearing before a state juvenile judge, she refused to reveal the boy’s precise location.
In addition, court documents state at the hearing Oliver's hair was a mess, she had visible bruises, and she looked like she’d been assaulted.
After being ordered to produce Jeremiah within 72 hours and failing to do so, she was arrested.
The child’s mother, Elsa Oliver, 28, and her boyfriend, Alberto Sierra, 22, are both now in custody, according to the MassLive.com report.
According to the report, Sierra faces charges of two counts of assault and battery on a child causing bodily injury, and assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, while Oliver has been charged as an accessory after the fact to alleged abuse. She is also charged with reckless endangerment of a child.
State Sen. Donald Humason is now calling for an independent investigation into the Massachusetts' DCF due to Jeremiah’s case.