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Couple Sues For $15 Million Over Foster Child’s Murder Of Their Son

February 17, 1986

TOWSON, Md. (AP) _ A couple whose son was killed by a foster child have filed a $15 million lawsuit alleging that state and county officials intentionally did not tell them about the foster child’s history of violent behavior and drug abuse.

James and Marjorie Foor, of Essex, say they told officials at the very start of their participation in the foster-care program that they could not care for a child with drug problems.

State officials told the family they would honor their request not to care for drug users, said their attorney, Michele Leipold.

The Foors’ 15-year-old son Anthony, one of four children, was slain on Feb. 20, 1983, by Gregory Reiter, then 16, who entered Anthony’s bedroom and slit his throat with a knife. Reiter pleaded guilty in 1983 to murder and was sentenced to 25 years at the Patuxent Institution.

After the killing, Reiter, apparently under the influence of drugs and alcohol, shot himself in the face with a shotgun and has undergone extensive reconstructive surgery.

The Foors say in their suit that the Juvenile Services Administration, the Baltimore County school department and county police should have warned them of Reiter’s past.

They allege that state and county officials ″deliberately and maliciously withheld that vital information.″ The family is seeking $5 million from each agency.

State and county officials declined comment on the suit.

According to the suit, the Foors agreed to take Reiter in September 1982, about a year after they began caring for foster children, and that a Juvenile Services psychologist told them only that Reiter did not get along with his father.

The suit says the family has suffered ″tremendous emotional, physical and financial injuries ... will need psychiatric care for the balance of their lives ... have lost their home, friends, neighbors, business relationships, and the capacity to act together as a family unit, and have suffered overwhelming guilt, depression and anxiety.″

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