On Nov. 28, the Clark County Department of Family Services received a call to its hotline regarding Roderick “RJ” Arrington, a 7-year-old boy who was alleged to be a victim of child abuse. This report was in the process of being investigated when additional information was reported to the agency that the child was listed in critical condition at a local hospital. He later died of the injuries sustained.
Accordingly, the Department of Family Services conducted an extensive review of all hotline policies and procedures and determined that they are effective when appropriately followed. The department also reviewed whether these policies were followed in this case and found that some staff failed to apply the policies correctly. The department took appropriate actions in disciplining staff for violations of policy, including one employee termination.
Additionally, DFS plans to convene a special Child Death Review Team meeting so that all parties involved in responding to a report of child abuse, including law enforcement, DFS state partners and the school district, can discuss this case to learn from it and work jointly to prevent such a tragedy from happening again.
“I strongly believe there are systemic lessons to be learned from this case,” said Lisa Ruiz-Lee, department director. “It will take all partners to come to the table to discuss what happened and how we can work together to best ensure the safety of our community’s children.”
Clark County is a dynamic and innovative organization dedicated to providing top-quality service with integrity, respect and accountability. With jurisdiction over the world-famous Las Vegas Strip and covering an area the size of New Jersey, Clark is the nation’s 14th-largest county and provides extensive regional services to more than 2 million citizens and 43 million visitors a year. Included are the nation’s 8th-busiest airport, air quality compliance, social services and the state’s largest public hospital, University Medical Center. The County also provides municipal services that are traditionally provided by cities to almost 900,000 residents in the unincorporated area. Those include fire protection, roads and other public works, parks and recreation, and planning and development.