GOVERNOR’S OFFICE

DOVER

EXECUTIVE ORDER

TO: HEADS OF ALL STATE DEPARTMENTS AND AGENCIES

NUMBER SIXTEEN

TO: HEADS OF ALL STATE DEPARTMENTS AND AGENCIES

Number 16: Naming Linda L. Ammons To Lead Independent Review Of Delaware’s Policies And Procedures For Sexual Assault Cases

WHEREAS, on December 16, 2009, Lewes, Delaware Pediatrician Dr. Earl B. Bradley was arrested and charged with various felonies based on allegations that Dr. Bradley had sexually assaulted children in his care; and

WHEREAS, allegations of sexual abuse and misconduct against Dr. Bradley first came to the attention of law enforcement in 1998: and

WHEREAS, allegations of sexual abuse and misconduct against Dr. Bradley may have come to the attention of licensees of the Delaware Board of Medical Practice several years prior to his arrest; and

WHEREAS, it is advisable and in the best interests of the State that an independent review be conducted of the State’s policies and procedures into the State's statutory and administrative procedures governing child sexual abuse and exploitation, and that, as a result of this review, recommendations be made that will foster a child protection community of collaboration and accountability to protect our children from predators;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, JACK A. MARKELL, GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE, DO HEREBY ORDER AND DECLARE AS FOLLOWS:

1. Linda L. Ammons, Associate Provost and Dean of The Widener University School of Law, is hereby named to lead an independent review into the State's statutory and administrative procedures governing child abuse and exploitation.

2. Dean Ammons may consult with the Attorney General, recognized experts in criminal justice, sexual assault and child protection, and any other person to assist her in her review.

3. The issues to be addressed in Dean Ammons’ independent review include but are not limited to the following:

(a) Proper communication and coordination between law enforcement agencies, professional regulators and the medical community;

(b) Professional reporting requirements for suspected incidents of misconduct and the enforcement thereof;

(c) Professional licensing requirements, procedures and enforcement, including comprehensive background checks and procedures for on-going review;

(d) Medical standards and protocols concerning proper pediatric care and the publication thereof to ensure that doctors, medical staff and parents have clear guidance;

(e) The sufficiency of outreach efforts regarding reporting requirements, so that those with legal obligations to report questionable behavior do so; and

(f) Ensuring that adequate services are provided for the protection and treatment of children suspected of being sexually abused in order to protect them from harm.

4. Dean Ammons shall issue a final report to the Governor’s Office, the Senate Public Safety Committee and the House Public Safety and Homeland Security Committee as soon as practicable. The report shall make recommendations to improve the administrative handling of child abuse and sexual exploitation cases focused on reducing child trauma, enhancing the effectiveness of administrative action, and reforming state laws and regulations to meet these objectives.

5. Any executive agency with pertinent information shall cooperate fully with Dean Ammons and shall promptly provide information to her as requested.

6. To facilitate the candid and forthright sharing of information from victims and other involved persons, Dean Ammons shall preserve applicable confidences and privileges to the extent necessary to undertake a complete and thorough investigation. The completed report of Dean Ammons shall be a public document.

APPROVED this 4th day of February, 2010

Jack A. Markell, Governor