According to WAVY, the investigation into the alleged abuse began on June 12, after the Chesapeake Department of Human Services informed Deep Creek United Methodist Church of “allegations of inappropriate discipline of children by staff members,” according to a letter sent by parents.
The letter did not go into detail about the allegations, but it did note that the staff members involved were put on administrative leave.
The church’s head Trustee, Tom Ambrose, stated in an interview that the church is cooperating with DHS and that it conducted an internal investigation. Their investigation found one instance of physical abuse of a child by a staff member. The incident involved an employee “touching a child’s neck,” and was reported to DHS immediately.
However, parents have been saying that they believe the problem runs deeper than what the church is presenting to the public.
Sara Jacobs said that on June 11 her husband went to pick up their 2-year-old son from the daycare. When he arrived, the child was shirtless and had a mark on his back. Jacobs’ husband confronted a teacher who told him that she grabbed the toddler by the wrist and drug him out from under a desk because he wasn’t listening.
Jacobs reported the incident to DHS the day before they began their investigation and they reported the incident to the police on Wednesday.
The Chesapeake police confirmed they are investigating two allegations stemming from the daycare center — one involving a student being drug from under a desk by a church employee. The other was referred to police by DHS and involves alleged abuse between two juveniles.
Another mother, Ashley Tucker, says she withdrew her toddler from the daycare on Monday, adding that she’s been told stories that terrify her by four different former employees. Another parent, who chose to remain anonymous, stated that he took both of his sons from the church’s childcare center more than a year ago after he became concerned about the way staff disciplined the children.
He told interviewers about an incident where a student bit his toddler-aged son, school administrators used Tabasco sauce as a form of discipline, with the parent’s permission.
As a result of this allegation, the interviewers independently confirmed that Tabasco sauce was used regularly by the school to discipline children who bit.
Child abuse in America takes on many forms, and the statistics tell a very unsettling story. There are thousands of daycare centers in the country that are licensed to care for children. That being said, some of these facilities harbor abusers who have easy access to our children, giving them the opportunity to carry out heinous acts of child abuse.
Data from 2006 (gathered from a collection of 39 states) showed that 5,321 daycare providers were found to be abusing and neglecting children in their care.
It’s estimated that boys and girls are equally likely to be victims of child abuse. A 2005 report states that 47.3 percent of all abused kids were male, while 50.7 percent were female. The age group most likely to be abused is children between the birth and 3 years of age.
The same report states that 49.7 percent of all child abuse victims were white, 23.1 percent were African-American, and 17.4 percent were Hispanic. American Indians accounted for 1.2 percent of abused children, while Asian-Pacific Islanders accounted for less than 1 percent of victims.
If your child has been injured after an accident or abuse at a daycare center, contact Thomas J. Henry. Parents put their trust in the staff of a daycare facility to keep their children safe and out of harm’s way. It is unacceptable for a child to be subjected to abuse or an unsafe premises while in their care. If your child was seriously injured due to the negligence or abusive actions of daycare staff, call our experienced child injury attorneys today. Thomas J. Henry has the legal and financial resources necessary to develop your child’s case properly. Call for a free case review.