Agency says social worker’s action ‘reprehensible’

Kansas Flag (KSN Photo)
Kansas Flag (KSN Photo)

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) – A Kansas agency says it was “reprehensible” for one of its former social workers to refuse to act on behalf of a toddler who was later beaten to death.

The Kansas Department for Children and Families commented Friday, one day after a federal judge ruled that Linda Gillen was entitled to immunity in a lawsuit by the girl’s grandparents.

Twenty-three-month-old Brooklyn Coons, of Coffeyville, died in 2008. Her father’s girlfriend is serving life in prison for her death.

Brooklyn’s grandparents contend Gillen refused to investigate their reports that the toddler was being abused.

The judge ruled for Gillen despite calling her actions unprofessional and “sadly, fairly consistent” with other cases in his court involving the Kansas agency. The agency contends the court has not advised it of any similar, recent cases. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language, racial slurs or consistent name calling will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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