Court documents from the the Kansas Department for Children and Families (DCF) show a harrowing life for a Kansas boy Lucas Hernandez. found deceased in May, with reports of child neglect and abuse starting when he was a 7-month-old.
CrimeOnline obtained a timeline of Lucas’ DCF reports provided by Kansas DCF Communications Director, Taylor Forrest, on Monday. The first report, filed on July 22, 2013, indicated that 7-month-old Lucas was temporarily removed from his family’s care. Law enforcement then placed Lucas in police protective custody for the first and only time, for “medical and physical neglect and lack of supervision allegations.”
On August 1, 2013, DCF received another report in regards to Lucas, but it wasn’t assigned, according to the report, because the issue was addressed during the July 22 report.
“Allegations of without parental control not assigned because the concern was addressed in the July 22, 2013 event. The Kansas Department for Children and Families (DCF) continued attempts to work with Lucas’ mother, Jamie Taylor, to establish family preservation services.”
By the time Lucas turned one, his father, Jonathan Hernandez, received physical custody. A former Wichita DCF employee who worked Lucas’ case told CrimeOnline that Jonathan was granted custody after he “got his life together” and showed enough improvement to provide Lucas with a stable home, while the mother, Jamie Taylor Orr, reportedly struggled with drug use.
On February 14, 2015, another report was made when Lucas was two, followed by another report when he was four, based on alleged “without parental control” against Jonathan Hernandez. The report indicated that the accusations were “unsubstantiated.”
In 2017, witnesses reported alleged physical abuse to DCF, claiming they saw numerous bruises and other signs of abuse on the boy. A total of seven reports were made between 2017-2018, but DCF left Lucas in the care of his father and his father’s live-in girlfriend, Emily Glass, after finding no substantial indication of abuse.
“The alleged perpetrator’s actions or inactions do not meet the abuse and/or neglect definitions,” the report read.
Although the school nurse at Beech Elementary School in Wichita apparently saw at least nine bruises and injuries on Lucas in January 2018, DCF indicated it never received any reports from the school prior to the time the Lucas disappeared.
The school district, however, maintained that it “followed the law” in regards to the boy, but refused to answer whether a report was filed and sent to local police and DCF before the boy was reported missing, according to The Wichita Eagle.
Per Kansas law, “teachers, school administrators, or other employees of an educational institution that the child is attending” are considered mandated reporters and must “report the matter promptly to DCF and/or law enforcement.”
Despite the school district’s comments that it followed proper procedures, no 911 calls have been found yet that indicate any calls were made to authorities from the school on behalf of Lucas.
After Lucas disappeared in February 2018, the school nurse then supposedly spoke with DCF after a request from a Wichita prosecutor. Below, additional details are provided with a timeline of reported instances of abuse.
- February 14, 2015: Jamie Taylor, the biological mother of Lucas, becomes worried about him and asks police to check on the boy at his father’s house. Police don’t find anything unusual going on and noted Lucas as “fine.”
- February 22, 2016: Police arrest Glass and Hernandez for fighting during a domestic dispute incident.
- March 2017: A witness told the Kansas Department for Children and Families (DCF) that Lucas was covered in temporary tattoos to hide the bruises on his body.
- May 16, 2017: A report is filed with DCF with complaints that Lucas is being abused at home, with Glass and an unknown person as the culprit. The reports noted that the witnesses said they saw a slap mark across the boy’s cheek and bruising on his arm in the shape of a hand.
- October 2017: Glass visited Hernandez while he worked in New Mexico, and brought Lucas along with her. Family members in New Mexico reported that they saw Lucas with two black eyes. The incident was reported to children’s services in New Mexico.
- November 2017: An updated report reflected that bruises appeared on Lucas after Glass fought with his father.
- December 3, 2017: A witness spotted Lucas with bruising on his arms, legs, and forehead. Lucas said Glass got mad at him and “threw a water bottle at his face.”
- December 16, 2017: Glass was supposed to pick Lucas up from school but claimed she fell asleep.
- January 22, 2018: Lucas arrived to school with numerous bruises and abrasions, according to an interview conducted by DCF with the school nurse after Lucas disappeared. The nurse found abrasions and bruising on the boy’s right eyelid, right cheek, right knee, nose, left eyebrow, left cheek, and left eyelid. He also had a large cut on his nose that measured around three inches long. The nurse said it looked as if Lucas had “been in a fight.” The quote by the nurse was given in late February 2018, as part of the Wichita prosecutor’s “child-in-need-of-care petition” filed after the state arrested Glass and took away her toddler daughter.
- January 23, 2018: Lucas visits the nurse again at school and complained of a stomach ache. Glass picked the little boy up from school and took him to a doctor. He returned to school a few days with a doctor’s note that said his injuries looked like he fell.
- February 1 and 6, 2018: Lucas continued to have stomach issues, even vomiting, and missed two days of school.
- February 5: Glass’ ex-husband filed a report with DCF, claiming that her two biological sons were being abused while at her home. The father alleged that his sons told him that Hernandez was physically abusing them.
- February 8, 2018: A DCF worker interviewed one of Glass’ sons at school. The boy said he got punished for spraying air freshener and that Hernandez pushed him. DCF didn’t notice any marks or bruising. The boy also said Hernandez yelled “bad words” at Glass.
- February 9, 2018: Lucas attended school for the last day before he disappeared. A doctor’s note indicated he had a stomach virus.
- February 16, 2018: Glass allegedly admitted she smoked a bowl of marijuana in the garage while Lucas and her 1-year-old daughter were in the home. She then drove to Olive Garden with her daughter, leaving Lucas home alone.
- February 17, 2018: Glass reported Lucas missing.
Check back with CrimeOnline as additional information become available.
[Feature Photo: Lucas Hernandez/Family Handout]