Siblings Who Drowned in Lake Were in Foster Care

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GEORGETOWN, Texas- State child welfare officials are halting placement of foster children by an agency in Austin after two young siblings drowned this weekend.

The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services said Monday that a 4-year-old boy and his 6-year-old sister pulled from Lake Georgetown had been in their foster home since last year. The agency is now investigating.

Witnesses told authorities the children were playing about 15 feet off the shoreline when they went under Sunday. They were taken to a hospital but could not be revived.

The children were placed in the foster home by Austin-based Providence Kids. A phone message was not immediately returned Monday.

Scrutiny on the child welfare system in Texas has intensified after foster care deaths tied to abuse and neglect rose sharply last year.