Pubdate: Fri, 13 Sep 2002
Source: Arizona Republic (AZ)
Copyright: 2002 The Arizona Republic
Author: Jeff Taylor


I applaud your coverage of the tragic death of Anndreah Robertson, of the 
inadequate protection afforded by Child Protective Services, and of the 
need for further legislation defining when abuse of a child actually starts 
if the mother is abusing drugs and alcohol.

However, you are missing the mark concerning this baby's death.

Let's assume that CPS had taken the child away. Anndreah's mother still has 
the opportunity to have another drug-addicted baby - she is nine months 

Anndreah's mother, Demitres Robertson, had previously been arrested on drug 
and prostitution charges. The problem is she was released with the same 
drug problem she was arrested with. The core issue is Demitres and her drug 

I had to be arrested and released four times before my last sentencing 
judge recommended I complete the Salvation Army's Harbor Light Program, a 
six-month drug treatment program that was a lot cheaper than sending me to 

That sentencing option no longer exists. Harbor Light closed two years ago 
due to lack of funding. While there I saw close to 30 drug-free babies born 
to mothers like Demitres.

Ask any Superior Court justice: Long-term residential treatment is 
desperately needed. How many babies could have been saved in these past two 
years? Maybe one.

Jeff Taylor

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