TOMBALL, Texas -- A Harris County judge has ordered Child Protective Services to pay a Tomball family $127,000 after finding they wrongfully removed their children from their home.
It started as an accidental fall for Melissa and Dillon Bright's 5-month-old son Mason. He was rushed to the hospital, where doctors found he had two fractures in his skull.
The family says that because doctors did not believe the second fracture came from the fall, they were investigated for child abuse.
"We were just completely oblivious to the fact that they were accusing us of abuse," Melissa said.
CPS placed the children with another family member. The Brights tell ABC13 that in the meantime they sought a second opinion from another doctor.
That doctor explained that the second fracture could have in fact come from the same fall.
While still in placement with another family member, the Brights say they reached out to CPS numerous times to tell them this information, and to also request that the children be moved closer to home due to medical issues their youngest son was having.
With no response, the Brights say they informed CPS they would be bringing both of their children back home.
The family's attorney says during that time they were contacted by their caseworker, who asked how the children were. The Brights say they responded with happy photographs and stated they were well, but later things would go wrong again.
During another hearing, the Brights say they were shocked to learn that CPS told a judge they had no knowledge of the children being back home. The family attorney says the judge was convinced to order another removal.
The Brights say they had no idea where their children were taken at first, and when they were finally able to see them, their 2-year old daughter Charlotte had a black eye. Melissa says the only explanation CPS had was that she fell from a bed.
The family's attorney, Dennis Slate, says they later found several inconsistencies in reports from CPS.
A judge ruled Thursday that there was no solid or substantial reason to interfere with the Bright family.
ABC13 reached out to CPS, who said that the caseworker who was assigned to the Brights is still employed.
They would not comment on whether or not he is being investigated, but did say they are exploring all options, including a possible appeal to the judge's decision.
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Judge orders CPS to pay $127,000 for wrongly removing children from Tomball family
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