jeremiahJeremiah Oliver is 5 years old and he has not been seen since September but lawmakers are just recently finding out about it. His mother, Elsa Oliver and her boyfriend, Alberto Sierra, have both been arrested on charges related to the boy’s disappearance. According to the DA in Worcester the case is being treated as a potential homicide.

Family members of the child have set up a FaceBook page, called “Praying for Jeremiah Oliver” and there has been a post left on the page reading as follows:

A search party has been approved for Jeremiah Oliver on Saturday, December 21, 2013 and 10:30 am on Kimball St in Fitchburg, Mass.  Everybody lets all come together and find out little angel.”

Also in this case it has come to the attention that the Department of Children & Families may come under legislative scrutiny for how the child’s case was handled. It has been reported that they have fired a social worker and a supervisor for their handling of Oliver’s case. The social worker had failed to perform a required monthly check at the Oliver home, according to Director Olga Roche.

Democratic House Speaker, Robert DeLeo has asked the chairs of the two legislative committees to look into how the agency has handled this case. The Republicans in the state Senate plan to formally ask for an independent investigation of the agency. They want to know if this was just an isolated case or if there are other cases handled this way as well.

The social worker not only failed to carry out the mandatory monthly visits to the home to check on Jeremiah, they also recommended that the family which has a history of drug abuse and violence, be released from state oversight  because it was doing well. This recommendation came even though it had been four months since social workers had seen the boy. Now little Jeremiah is missing and many fear the child is dead.

The police learned of the boy’s disappearance on December 2, 2013 when a staff member at the Reingold Elementary School noticed that Jeremiah’s 7 year old sister was acting aggressive towards the other children and she looked “unkept” and in distress. The school then contacted the DCF and the agency raised a broader alarm about the family.

When the sister was questioned, she told authorities that she had seen Sierra punch her brothers and hit them with a belt causing one of them to bleed. The girl said that the pinky finger on one of her brothers appeared to have been cut off too. She told authorities that she and her mother had both been beaten by Sierra and that her brother was last seen alive on September 14, 2013 by a relative.

I don’t know what the chances are now for this little boy. I don’t know if he is alive somewhere and hidden or if he’s dead. Whatever the case may be I pray he is found soon. If he is found alive I pray the state will keep safe from any danger that would threaten his life.

Jan Barrett

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