Katie Beers: A Little Girl Buried Alive

Is this a suburban childhood? Even before Katie Beers was held captive in a homemade dungeon, the 10-year-old led a hard life of neglect.

A LOT OF PEOPLE SENSED THERE was something wrong in the life of 10-year-old Katie Beers. No one seemed in a position to do much about it. To the neighbors in West Islip, a Long Island suburb, she was the wide-eyed little girl who roamed the streets at all hours, sometimes coatless in the winter. Child- protection authorities had built up a fat dossier on her makeshift family. They knew that sometimes Katie stayed with her unmarried mother in a filthy, roach-infested house where rusted cars and an old refrigerator decorated the lawn. But sometimes she was in the charge of...

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