Fla. caseworker stabbed to death during home visit


DADE CITY, Fla. (AP) — The death of an inexperienced health care caseworker in Florida underscores the dangers of in-home visits by social workers and health care professionals.

Police say 25-year-old Stephanie Ross was stabbed to death Monday morning during a visit to Lucious Smith's apartment in Dade City. Authorities say Ross had visited Smith before and even noted in his file that there was something that made her feel very uncomfortable around him. She also wrote that future visits should be done with another person but she still made the visit alone.

Some states have added safeguards to prevent attacks on caseworkers, such as pairing them up with another worker for home visits or assigning a police escort, but the additional measures are sometimes too costly for states and private companies.

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