Grand jury scolds DCF for undercounting child deaths

Report claims DCF administrators 'intentionally and deliberately' manipulated investigations

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MIAMI - A grand jury has accused Department of Children and Families administrators of "intentionally and deliberately" manipulating investigations into child abuse and death to make it appear few Florida children were dying.

In a 30-page report issued Tuesday, grand jurors found that the agency has made strides since the 2011 abuse death of a 10-year-old Miami girl. But they scolded the agency for what they called a systematic attempt to conceal the number of children who've died due to abuse or neglect.

The agency's interim secretary Mike Carroll says it's clear the grand jury understands the challenges faced by DCF.

The report referenced a Miami Herald series called Innocents Lost that concluded DCF had revised its definition of "neglect," resulting in an artificial number of deaths.

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