8-year-old girl walking dog prompts police and DCFS investigation

A north suburban family says they were investigated by police and child welfare officials for letting their daughter walk the family dog.

The family can’t understand why a neighbor's complaint led to two investigations.

“Every time I walk him, on the side right here, it looks like, a part of his mouth, it looks like he's smiling,” the 8-year-old daughter said.

Corey Widen's daughter says she loves walking the family's new puppy, even though one of her recent walks led Wilmette police to show up and question her mother.

“I said, did I do something wrong? And she said, well how old is she? I said, she's eight. And she said well okay, we got a call that she's five or under,” said Widen.

A neighbor had called police with concerns about child neglect. The Widen's aren't sure exactly who it was. The cops decided no charges were needed, which led the neighbor to call the state's Department of Children and Family Services.

“They found it unfounded, but it took a lot to get to that point,” Widen said.

The Widens say that the visits from police and the DCFS have caused a lot of stress in their family.

“Quite a bit for my daugher, it really scared her to open the door and see the police there,” Widen said.

DCFS told FOX 32, "We don't control the calls that come into our hotline…we don't know without checking it out."

Some neighbors believe that whoever reported the little dog walker went too far.

“Most of us made the comment that if somebody had a concern, that the proper thing would have been to knock on her door and say something to her directly,” said neighbor Jim Eisenmann.

Widen agrees.

“We did something that was perfectly normal on the North Shore and in parenting and I still got investigated by DCFS,” she said.