Employee Charged For Not Believing Abuse Claim

Saturday, September 22nd 2007, 3:35 pm
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) _ Oklahoma County prosecutors have charged a Department of Human Services employee with a misdemeanor for allegedly not believing a 5-year-old girl who said she had been sexually abused. Nancy Cannady, 63, was charged on Friday with a misdemeanor count of failing to report the child's claim that she had been sexually abused while in foster care.

Cannady, a child welfare specialist, told Oklahoma City police she did not believe the 5-year-old's claim because the little girl lies, according to court papers.

However, the teenage boy admitted to sexually assaulting her and another girl in a foster home, investigators allege.

Department of Human Service spokesman George Johnson declined to comment on the case because he was not familiar with the allegations.

Cannady has worked for DHS since April 2006, but Johnson said she has prior experience as a child welfare worker.

Cannady served as the case worker for 17-year-old Cecil Frazier and the 5-year-old he allegedly abused, placing them in the same south Oklahoma City foster home. The girl was placed in the home in November and was removed six months later because of her violent behavior.

Attempts to reach Cannady or an attorney for Frazier for comment were unsuccessful.

In June, the 5-year-old told her new foster mother she had been sexually abused by Frazier. The foster mother and a therapist reported the girl's claims to Cannady, officials said.

Two months later, Oklahoma City police learned about allegations against Frazier, when his foster mother reported her daughter had been raped. Detective Tony Foreman found out about the other girl's allegations about a week later when he talked to her former foster mother, he said in an affidavit filed in the case.

Prosecutors charged Frazier last week with eight counts of rape, sodomy, and lewd acts with a child.

Even with the misdemeanor charge, Cannady's job with the Department of Human Services hasn't been affected.

Johnson said the Guthrie resident recently transferred to the Logan County office, and the change was not a result of the allegations against her.

Cannady could be assigned to administrative duties until the criminal case is resolved, but the agency is not required to fire her unless she is convicted of a felony, Johnson said.