Joshua Hill’s two-year-old daughter was taken away from him last November because he was caught smoking marijuana while she was asleep.
Child Protective Services put young Alexandria Hill in the care of foster parents, who abused and eventually murdered the child two months later.
Rockdale’s Sherill Small, whom Alex was placed with, has since been arrested on murder charges.
According to Austin, Texas, TV station KVUE, Alexandria was rushed to the hospital Monday night with severe head injuries and then flown to White Children’s Emergency Hospital in Temple, where she was placed on life support.
Hill, of Round Rock, Texas, got the call Monday night that Alex was in the hospital. He had last seen his daughter on a July 25 visitation at McDonald’s.
“They wouldn’t tell me what condition she was in or what was wrong or what had happened. The only thing they would tell me is I needed to be there. When I got there, I found out that Alex was in a coma.”
For two days, Joshua held out hope that his daughter would regain consciousness, but on Wednesday night, she was taken off life support.
Hill told KVUE that he knew she was being abused after their first visit.
“She would come to visitation with bruises on her, and mold and mildew in her bag,” he said. “It got to a point where I actually told CPS that they would have to have me arrested because I wouldn’t let her go back.”
Officials with the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services told KVUE that they rely on private agencies to perform background checks on foster homes.
The agency assigned to Small’s household was Texas Mentor. State records show a total of 15 violations for the agency’s Austin Branch within the past two years.
Four of those deficiencies were for failing to perform proper background checks on foster homes.
“We never hurt our daughter,” Joshua told KVUE. “She was never sick, she was never in the hospital, and she never had any issues until she went into state care.”
Small’s bond is set at $100,000.
Via ThingProgress, KVUE