Foster Care Agency Reacts to Child Death



"Influenced by the private agency case manager"-- This line found in Saharah Weatherspoon's case summary is one of the only clues as to why the state would leave her in home where abuse had been reported.
Saharah's biological mother, Jennifer Jones, is now left tending her two-year-old's grave. But, News Channel 9 is asking why two agencies which are supposed to work together for children somehow disagreed about Saharah's safety. And, whether that disagreement contributed to her death.
The private agency was Omni Visions Incorporated, which has a contract with the state of Georgia to provide care for foster children. Clara Edwards worked for Omni Visions as a foster mother and it was in her home that Saharah suffered the injuries that claimed her life.
Jones says she saw an awful thing unfolding before her eyes and she was helpless to stop it.  "I tell them. There's something going on there. They are being abused and they never listened."
After Saharah's death, the state caseworker had regrets about giving in to Omni Visions and leaving the child in Edwards home. We've been calling Omni Visions since March to find out what went wrong in that Catoosa County home. Today, for the first time, our call was returned.
Program Director, Kathy Joyner, tells us "we are devastated by this and we've been working very hard to support our staff who also have been devastated."
When we asked about specifics of Saharah's case and why Omni Visions might have influenced the DFCS case managers, they didn't give up much. "At the request of the department, we are unable to make any comments specific or general about this case," says Omni Visions' President, Eric Strickland.
Meantime, Omni Visions makes it clear that it is not a part of the criminal investigation and its managers are are not privy to any details of where it stands.