Groups say authorities failed 9-year-old NM boy

February 10, 2014 • State News

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — African-American community and civil-rights groups are calling for action in the wake of reports that authorities didn’t adequately respond to previous signs of trouble involving the family of a 9-year-old [auth] boy who died in December.

The groups say those police officers and state employees who had chances to save Omaree Varela but instead failed him and should lose their jobs.

Police went to the family home in June in response to a 911 call but didn’t arrest anybody or remove children from the home. A later complaint by the boy himself about alleged abuse was looked into but went nowhere.

Police union president Stephanie Lopez says the community should wait for the results of the department’s investigation into the officers’ conduct before calling for their termination.

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