November 26, 1997 in Nation/World

Large Donation Fails To Reach Victim’s Family

Compiled From Wire Services
 

Moved by compassion for Girl X, the 9-year-old brutally assaulted and maimed in a Chicago housing project, people donated an estimated $300,000 to help her and her family.

Nine months later, however, the family has received only $1,000 of the money while the woman who launched the fund-raising drive admits she paid herself $20,000 for administrative costs.

Community organizer Beverly Reed, who registered a charitable trust for the family in March, says she was worried that giving the family more money would affect their welfare status.

Reed said Tuesday that most of the money was still in the bank.

On Jan. 9, Girl X was attacked in the crime-ravaged Cabrini-Green public housing project where the family lived. She was beaten, sexually assaulted, forced to drink cockroach poison and then left for dead in a filthy stairwell. Police have charged an ex-convict with the crime.

Girl X - whose name has not been disclosed - was released from the hospital in June, still unable to walk, see, speak or feed herself. She now lives in the Illinois Children’s Rehabilitation and Education Center.

State officials, who were asked to investigate by the family’s attorney, say they want a full accounting of the trust’s records. “We’re not going to allow Girl X to be victimized again,” said Fletcher Perkins, an aide to Illinois Attorney General Jim Ryan.


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