2 DCFS employees officially terminated after AJ Freund case review

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AJ Freund

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MCHENRY COUNTY, Ill. — Two Illinois Department of Children and Family Service employees are no longer employees of the agency following the death of 5-year-old A.J. Freund.

A spokesman with DCFS confirmed Friday a supervisor and caseworker are no longer employed by the state.

McHenry County representative Allen Skillicorn had called for consequences in the handling of the boy’s case by DCFS workers.

“There is an Inspector General Report that says that they should be dismissed and they weren’t doing their jobs,” he said. “There is a situation where one worker punched into work and then goes and moonlights another job.”

Skillcorn said the caseworker was responsible for investigating reports of abuse and unsanitary living conditions inside the home prior to the boy’s death in April.

Prosecutors say the boy’s parents Joann Cunningham and Andrew Freund Sr beat the boy and then buried his body in a shallow grave.

The agency completed a comprehensive review of the case and in statement a spokesperson said in part, “As part of this review, DCFS has taken personnel action regarding Carlos Acosta and Andrew Polovin, the caseworker and supervisor involved in the case. Mr. Acosta and Mr. Polovin are no longer employed by the state. DCFS is continuing to examine the department’s work in this case and will take all necessary action to protect the children and families we serve.”

The two were the same employees named in a lawsuit filed in October. Lawyers said in that suit that Acosta and Polovin ignored clear signs that the boy was being abused for months before his death.

Last week, Cunningham changed her plea to guilty in a deal with prosecutors.

Freund Sr. has pleaded not guilty and appeared at a procedural hearing Friday in McHenry County.

They both remain in custody on a $5 million bond.

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