Buddy Cianci of News Talk 630 WPRO & 99.7 FM talks with Nicholas Alahverdian about his suit against the Rhode Island Department of Children, Youth and Families.
Background: Nicholas Alahverdian had been in the care of the Rhode Island Department of Children, Youth and Families (DCYF) due to his alcoholic and abusive parents. He was tortured, physically and sexually abused, deprived of medical care and neglected by employees of the group homes and his peers. The twist in the story is that when he was 15, he was a legislative aide for the Rhode Island House of Representatives.
When he began to arrive at the State House covered in bruises, cuts, and fresh scars, legislators discovered the conditions that he lived in. State representatives and senators worked with Nicholas to push for reform of the system, but in 2002 DCYF placed him in two out-of-state placements where even worse abuse and torture continued and he was prohibited from contacting lawyers, the police, the courts, or anyone else. He was given copious amounts of sedating drugs, kept in confinement, and prohibited from attending school until he aged out of the system at age 18.
Both placements were later shut down by their respective states for abuse and neglect, and he returned to Rhode Island at age 18. He has been a lobbyist who pushed for several bills that would end out of state placements and protect children in state care from abuse and neglect.
He has since filed suit against the State of Rhode Island and state officials (including former Governor Donald L. Carcieri) for deliberately and knowingly allowing the torture to continue and conspiring to prevent him from working with the legislators who pressured them to reform the system and put him in a safe, permanent placement.