Maryland Child Protective Services has dropped all allegations of child neglect made against Maryland “free-range” parents Danielle and Alexander Meitiv, who have publicly chronicled their fight with authorities ever since their 10- and 6-year-old children were detained after walking in the neighborhood without an adult.
Danielle Meitiv said Sunday night that she and her husband Alexander were cleared in the second of two child-neglect cases. The first case, which was also due to the Meitivs letting their children walk alone in their Silver Spring neighborhood, was dismissed in May.
“We received the notice about CPS’ findings in the second, horrible incident when the kids were picked up on April 12th,” Mrs. Meitiv wrote on Facebook. “They ‘ruled out’ neglect, which means BOTH cases have been decided in our favor and are now closed. There is more to do to make sure this doesn’t happen to other families, but at least for now we can breathe a little easier.”
CPS provided no explanation why the agency instituted its investigation or why it made a “Ruled Out” determination, according to a press release.
“We are not surprised that CPS has dropped its frivolous allegations,” said Matthew J. Dowd, who is the lead attorney representing the Meitivs on a pro bono basis. “But its decision does not remedy the harm caused to the children when they were illegally detained by police and then CPS for over five hours. There were clear constitutional violations that need to be investigated and remedied.”
Attorney Thomas DeGonia, who is also working with the Meitivs, added, “Although the decision does not provide any explanation, this ruling clearly establishes that Danielle and Alexander Meitiv never violated any child safety laws when they taught their children how to walk safely in their own neighborhood.”