Allen Charles Davidson, 38, of Paradise Hill leaves Battleford Court of Queen's Bench on July 20 after pleading guily to manslaughter. He was given a 10-year sentence in relation to the death of a 13-month-old infant who was in foster care at the time of his death.
Credits: MURRAY CRAWFORD/QMI AGENCY
LLOYDMINSTER, SK - The Saskatchewan Social Services Ministry is conducting an internal review of the foster care system after a man with 85 prior convictions pleaded guilty to the death of a 13-month-old boy left in his care.
Andrea Brittin, the acting assistant deputy minister of child and family services, said a child death review is under way.
However, because it is an internal review, the findings will not be made public.
On July 20, Allen Charles Davidson, 38, of Paradise Hill, SK, pleaded guilty to manslaughter in relation to the death of Genesis Vandell Parenteau-Dillon. Davidson, who was dating Genesis' foster mother, Cheryl McLellan, was looking after the boy on Nov. 1, 2011, when the child suffered life-threatening injuries.
An autopsy showed a number of injuries including contusions to the forehead and raccoon eyes, which is a sign of basal skull fracture. There were also a number of injuries on the scalp.
Davidson was given a 10-year jail sentence.
The internal review is being conducted with the Onion Lake First Nation Child and Family Services Agency. Upon completion, the report is provided to the children's advocate office, which will review it and determine if they should conduct a further external review into the matter.
"When the children's advocate office reviews, their recommendations are made public in their annual report," Brittin said.
The internal review will look at the circumstances leading up to the death and the services provided to the family or the foster family. Brittin said because it is an internal review, Avaliene Parenteau, the biological mother of the infant killed, will not be involved.
At the time of Genesis' death, Davidson was the sole caregiver in the house.
"This shouldn't happen in a foster home," Parenteau has said. "Nobody should have to go through this."
Davidson had an extensive criminal history, including 85 prior convictions. While most of them were property related offences, at the time of Genesis' death he was on probation for break and enter and assault. Davidson was also convicted of assault and forcible confinement in 2002.
Brittin said under social services policy, an approved foster parent is responsible to ensure the ministry is aware of other adults living in the home. It is the responsibility of the ministry to ensure a criminal record check is completed on all other adults in the home.
Parenteau said she was surprised to learn a man with a criminal record was living in a foster home.
"I hope people who have kids in care look out for these kinds of signs and really do a check and make sure their kids are in a safe home," Parenteau said.
After Davidson was sentenced on July 20 Tracy Buffalo, Parenteau's lawyer, called for a public inquiry.
"There needs to be a public inquiry into child protection in Saskatchewan in both the aboriginal and non-aboriginal agencies," Buffalo said. "Essentially both systems are flawed. When you place a child in a home with an individual that has 85 prior convictions there is something flawed about that system."
Parenteau spoke out about her treatment as a biological parent who had a child taken from her and into foster care.
"They make us feel like we're the bad person," Parenteau said. "They've always done that to me, make me feel like I've done something wrong. When this happened, they sure made me feel like it was my fault."