Blake Farrey in child protective custody in Michigan
Blake Farrey, the 19-month-old big brother of the late Jackson Farrey, was in child protective custody in Michigan on Thursday, according to Child Protective Services.
Child Protective Services will first try to link Blake up with a relative, a spokesman said. His parents are from St. Charles, Ill., so that's a likely starting point.
CPS couldn't specify how long Blake would stay in Michigan. But there are many reasons a child might stay in out-of-state foster care for an extended time -- one of them is if the child needs medical attention.
Blake and 5-month-old Jackson, along with their parents, Jenna and Spc. Jeffrey Farrey, a Fort Bliss soldier, were reported missing from their El Paso home Friday. All of them except for Jackson were found in Michigan on Sunday. Authorities discovered what they believe to be the remains of Jackson buried in the New Mexico desert Wednesday.
"People don't wake up in the morning and say, "I'm gonna beat my kids,'" said Child Crisis Center of El Paso Executive Director Al Velarde.
According to a 2011 study from the U.S. Health and Human Services Department, nearly 680,000 children were maltreated nationally, with more than 1,500 cases resulting in death. Of all cases, more than one-quarter of victims are younger than 2. Eighty percent of the time, a parent is the abuser, and 54 percent of abusers are women. About one in three abusers is between 20 and 29 years old.
"When you're in the military, you're very young, and you're away from home and family and a support network," said Fort Bliss spokeswoman Jean Offutt.
In her Facebook videos, mother Jenna Farrey talked about the difficulties of being a mom with a military husband.
"You know exactly what the f--- I'm talking about," Farrey said in her vlog.
But Fort Bliss officials said the Farreys were not a family overwhelmed by Army life. The base offers various family support groups, financial aid services and free childcare.
"During the orientations for new soldiers and families when they come into Fort Bliss, all of the programs that are open to them are discussed with them," Offutt said.
The Child Crisis Center of El Paso offers case-management services to parents at the boiling point, as well as a 24/7 emergency shelter for children 13 and younger. Parents in need of a break are asked to call 915-562-HOPE.
"We are deeply saddened, because we know that if only the parents of young Jackson would have reached out for help, would have made a phone call at the time when they felt that they were at a boiling point, we could have stepped in, and maybe this child could be alive today," Velarde said.
If you observe signs of abuse such as bruising, fear of going home or significant behavioral changes, you're asked to call the Child Crisis Center of El Paso at 1-800-252-5400.
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