I HAD TO POST THIS. THIS HERE IS A SHAME & MAKES U WANT TO QUESTION HOW
CLOSE DOES THE CHILD WELFARE CHECK UP ON POTENTIAL ADOPTING PARENTS.
THEY ARE SUPPOSE T TAKE CHILDREN OUT OF ABUSIVE HOMES INTO PROTECTING
HOMES BUT SOME END UP WITH PEOPLE LIKE THIS..
Pair in child torture case agree to return to Fla.
Children a€?looked like the photos ... of Auschwitz,a€?
MSNBC News Services
Updated: 4:59 p.m. ET Feb. 7, 2005
MONTICELLO, Utah - A couple being held in Utah, accused of torturing
five of their adopted children, agreed to return to Florida to face
John and Laura Dollar, accused of beating and chaining five children,
pulling out their toenails with pliers and starving them, were caught
Friday in Utah, said a law enforcement officer at the San Juan County
The couple left Florida after their seven adopted children were removed
from their Tampa-area home last month. Doctors had alerted investigators
when the couplea€?s 16-year-old boy, who weighed just 60 pounds,
was treated at a hospital for head and neck injuries.
The couple, John and Linda Dollar, cared for seven children aged 12 to
17 in their Citrus County home in west central Florida, investigators
The children were not the Dollarsa€? biological children, nor were
they foster children, but investigators would not discuss their relation
for privacy reasons.
Children a€?looked like the photos ... of Auschwitza€?
Floridaa€?s Department of Children and Families has taken custody
of all the children, who said the Dollars beat and punished five of them
for stealing food or messing up the house..
Authorities said the abused five had physical injuries to back up their
claims and were severely malnourished. They told of being forced to
sleep in a closet in the Dollarsa€? bedroom because the couple
accused them of stealing food and misbehaving, said Citrus County
sheriffa€?s spokeswoman Gail Tierney.
a€?They looked like the photos that wea€?ve seen of
Auschwitz,a€ said Tierney, describing 14-year-old twins, one
weighing 36 pounds, the other 38 pounds, about 80 pounds below the
normal weights for their age.
The other two children were favored by the Dollars and were uninjured,
In the past two years, the Dollars have moved their family to at least
three different homes in the Tampa area after living in Tennessee,
secluding themselves behind fences and in piney groves. The children
were home-schooled and rarely played with neighbors or enjoyed the
a€?Who has seven kids and the kids never go out and play?a€
asked Dawn Crescimone, who lived near the family in suburban Tampa two
The family had lived in Beverly Hills, about 85 miles north of Tampa,
since August. John Dollar, 58, is a commercial real estate appraiser,
and his 51-year-old wife taught the children at home. The
Dollarsa€? 3,800-square foot home is surrounded by a thick pine
forest and has a pool, spa and a three-car garage.
Injuries prompted investigation
DCF began investigating the couple when a 16-year-old boy living in
their home was rushed to the hospital on Jan. 21 with severe injuries
after one of the other children called for an ambulance. The family
included three girls, ages 12, 13 and 17; three 14-year-old boys, two of
them twins; and the 16-year-old boy.
a€?They are safe, and they are doing as well as can be expected
given the circumstances,a€ DCF spokesman Bill Da€?Aiuto
Tennessee Department of Childrena€?s Services officials said
Friday they hadna€?t investigated the Dollars while they lived in
Gov. Jeb Bush said the couple adopted the children in the 1990s. DCF
officials said the adoption records were sealed, but there were no other
prior abuse reports involving the family in Florida.
In a 1995 application with the Department of Children and Families,
Linda Dollar wrote that she left home at age 16 because of her ***ic
and abusive father. She also wrote that her first marriage ended because
of a€?abuse.a€ She gave no other details.
The comments were included in 164 pages of documents from when the
Dollars applied to become foster parents. The department released them
The Associated Press and Reuters contributed to this report.