BOSTON (AP) – The commissioner of the state's embattled child welfare agency told a legislative hearing looking into the disappearance of a 5-year-old boy that no other children in state care were missing. But turns out that on any given day, dozens of children in state care are unaccounted for — most of them teenagers who have run away from foster homes.
Department of Children and Families Commissioner Olga Roche told legislators last month she was “100 percent confident” there were no more Jeremiah Olivers out there. Jeremiah is a 5-year-old Fitchburg boy who hasn't been seen for months and is feared dead.
Agency officials defended Roche's assertion. A department spokesman says she was referring to cases similar to Jeremiah's and was “not responding to a question about teenagers on the run.”