LAS VEGAS -- Mistakes were made. That's the conclusion of an internal review into the beating death of a 7-year-old boy.
Roderick "RJ" Arrington Jr. died Nov. 30 after someone at his school reported that he was being abused.
Child welfare officials didn't respond in time.
The I-Team has been pushing Clark County to release the results of its internal review for months and as recently as two days ago, Clark County Commission Chairman Steve Sisolak said the results would not be made public.
But on Thursday the county released its findings, acknowledging that the people who might have saved RJ didn't do their jobs.
According to a written statement by the Clark County Department of Family Services, it conducted an extensive review of its child abuse hotline policies and concluded that the policies work when they are followed.
In RJ's case, employees did not follow the existing policies, the statement said.
As a result of the review, the county disciplined staff for the violations, including the termination one employee.
Earlier this week, the I-Team pressed Sisolak to release the county's findings. He explained that while he wasn't comfortable with the decision, county attorneys advised that the findings could not be made public.
"Clearly tragedy occurred and we're not going to rectify that by releasing or not releasing," Sisolak said. "I don't know what's in that report. I don't know what's claimed by any of the parties that are involved, and until somebody above me says that, ‘Look, it needs to come out or it should come out,' I have to follow what the interpretation of the district attorney's office is."
To learn from the mistakes in RJ's case, the department plans to convene a special child death review team.
Family Services Director Lisa Ruiz-Lee said by working with those in the child welfare system, including law enforcement, the state and the school district, similar tragedies can be prevented in the future.
Coming up at 11pm, I-Team reporter Colleen McCarty will take a look at another kind of disclosure involving child deaths and whether the county is reporting what it should.
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