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November 3, 2002 1:18 PM

DCF lapses proved fatal for 37 kids

David Nieves Jr. is buried in the Garden of Promise, under a gravestone emblazoned with a teddy bear, clad with a bow. "He was the sweetest little boy. He couldn't defend himself," recalled Jocelyn Pridemore, a registered nurse who warned the Department of Children & Families that David, developmentally disabled, might be in danger. "I feared he would end up dead."

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