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from The Boston Globe Online
Mother of foster child killed by a dog gets $260,000 from state
By Associated Press, 4/25/2002 07:03
WARE, Mass. (AP) The state has agreed to pay $260,000 to the mother of a 5-year-old boy who was killed by a dog while in foster care last year.
Kyle Ross was mauled to death by a Rottweiler last June 9 outside his Springfield foster home.
Diana Ross, who has two other children in foster care awaiting adoption, told the Springfield Union-News that the out-of-court settlement had strengthened her resolve to get them back.
''They figured they'd pay me off and I'd forget my two kids, but I won't,'' Ross, 28, told the Union-News. ''I'm going to keep fighting.''
In addition to the money, which will be paid over time into several trust funds, Ross received a face-to-face apology from the leader of the state Department of Social Services and the right to comment on the new department policies for screening foster parents.
Kyle Ross' death triggered a three-month state investigation of 3,776 foster homes and the closure of eight because of aggressive animals and other problems. It also prompted new regulations about how foster parents are selected and what pets they can have.
The settlement of the wrongful death claim was mediated through the state attorney general's office. It explicitly states that the department is not admitting liability for Kyle's death.
The cash settlement will be paid in to several trust funds. Ross will receive $492 a month for the rest of her life. Her two sons, Damien Redding, 4, and Aaron Ross, 8 months, will each receive at least $66,800 after they turn 18.
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