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Daycare Provider Charged in Death of Infant

An Iowa City daycare provider has been charged in the death of a 7-month-old child that was found unresponsive at the daycare and later passed away.

Provider Intoxicated While Watching Children

According to KCRG, Windy Young was acting as a daycare provider for children between the ages of 7-months and 3-years-old. On October 18, 2017, a 7-month-old in Young’s care was found unresponsive and was pronounced dead at a hospital.

Court records state that Young admitted to having 10 to 12 cans of beer before her initial daycare arrival. Records also say alcohol was found in Young’s system more than eight hours after she started watching the children.

Young was arrested on April 18, 2018 and has been charged with Negligent or Abandonment of a Dependent Person.

Daycare Injury Statistics

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, at least six out of ten — nearly 13 million — infants, toddlers and preschool children are enrolled in daycare. These centers are supposed to be providing substitute care for your children, but sadly we find that sometimes they may cause more harm than good.

  • According to the CPSC, approximately 31,000 children under age 4 are treated in U.S. hospital emergency rooms for injuries at child care settings on average.
  • 8% of the child care settings had cribs that did not meet current safety standards.
  • 24% of the child care settings did not have safe playground surfacing.
  • 13% of the child care settings did not use child safety gates where necessary.
  • 26% of the child care settings had loops on the window blind cords.
  • 5% of the child care settings had products that had been recalled by CPSC.

Contact an Experienced Daycare Injury Attorney

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.

25 Children Hurt After Dump Truck Rear-Ends Texas School Bus

More than two dozen children and adult chaperones were taken to Houston-area hospitals Wednesday following a traffic collision involving two school buses and a dump truck.

Early Reports Suggest Dump Truck Rear-Ended One of the School Buses

According to KWTX, the collision occurred when a dump truck rear-ended a Navasota Independent School District school bus. The impact from the initial collision caused the first bus to collide with a second school bus from the same school district.

Police say 25 students and five adults were transported to nearby hospitals with various injuries.

The two school buses were part of a three bus fleet transporting elementary school students to a Houston museum. Early reports indicate all the injured students were fifth-graders.

Police are still investigating the accident.

School Transportation Accident Statistics

  • According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there were 1,344 people killed in school-transportation-related crashes recorded between 2004 and 2013. This averages to 134 fatalities per year.
  • Of the 1,344 fatalities, only 8 percent were occupants of school transportation vehicles.
  • Most (71%) of the people who lost their lives in these crashes were occupants of other vehicles involved in the crashes.
  • Nonoccupants, including pedestrians, bicyclists, etc., accounted for 21 percent of the fatalities.
  • Among the 106 occupants killed in school transportation vehicles between 2004 and 2013, 45 were drivers and 61 were passengers.

Contact an Experienced School Bus Accident Attorney

At Thomas J. Henry Injury Attorneys, we have the experience and resources to handle your child’s case. If your child has been injured in a school bus accident, contact our offices. Our experienced bus accident lawyers are available 24/7, nights and weekends, and can provide you with a free case review.

 

Teen Crushed by Folding Rear Seat in Honda Odyssey

Two people with their hands placed on a casket at a funeral.

An Ohio teenager died Tuesday after becoming stuck in the cargo area of a 2004 Honda Odyssey minivan. Early evidence suggests the teen became stuck after the third-row bench seat collapsed and folded into the storage section, a popular feature in Odyssey minivans which is meant to allow for more floor room.

Communication Failures by Dispatcher Contributed to Teen’s Death

According to USA Today, 16-year-old Kyle Plush was reaching to retrieve tennis equipment from the back his 2004 Honda Odyssey when the third-row seat flipped backward and into the rear well. The force of that motion and the weight of the seat trapped Plush upside down with his head in the rear well and his legs in the air, against the minivan’s back hatch

The weight of the seat combined with Plush’s body position was enough to restrict his ability to expand his chest and breathe. He died of asphyxia by chest compression.

FOX News reports that after becoming trapped, Plush made two calls to 911 using the voice-activated Siri function on his iPhone. Plush can be hear telling the 911 dispatcher that he is inside a gold Honda Odyssey van in the parking lot of Seven Hills, the high school he attended, and informing the dispatcher that he was “almost dead.”

Cincinnati Police Chief Eliot Isaac lsaac told reporters that the information about the make and model of the vehicle was not relayed to officers. In later reordering, responding officers can be heard saying they had checked vehicles in the area, but did not find anything and left the scene.

Plush was found dead roughly six hours later by a family member.

Nearly 1 Million Odysseys Previously Recalled for Seat Defects

While Honda says there is no recall in connection involving the third-row seats of 2004 Honda Odysseys, more than 900,000 Odyssey minivans were recalled in November after Honda Motor Co. received 46 reports of injuries caused by second-row seats tipping forward.

Similar to third-row seats, the second-row seats can be released from anchor points so that they can be moved to allow for increased floor space. Honda warned consumers that if a second-row seat is not properly latched after adjusting it side-to-side or reinstalling a removed seat, the set can tip forward during moderate to heavy breaking resulting in an increased risk of injury to the occupant.

The recall affected 2011 to 2017 model year Odyssey minivans.

Contact an Experienced Auto Recall Attorney

Thomas J. Henry Injury Attorneys are leaders in the area of product liability litigation. Our Defective Drug and Products Division has extensive knowledge and resources in order to represent our clients efficiently and aggressively. We represent a multitude of people who are battling against manufacturers of defective vehicles and auto parts.

Your choice does matter. If you or a loved one has suffered serious injuries because of a recalled vehicle or defective auto part, call Thomas J. Henry immediately. We represent clients/victims all over the country. We are available 24/7, nights and weekends.

St. Luke’s Episcopal School Coach Charged with Sexual Assault of a Child

A coach at St. Luke’s Episcopal School in San Antonio was arrested and charged with sexual assault of a child Thursday.

Details of the Alleged Sexual Assault

According to KSAT, Scott Dow, 42, is accused of sexually assaulting a teenage student at St. Luke’s Episcopal School.

An offense report states that the child was sent to Dow to get an over-the-counter medication to alleviate a headache. According to the report, Dow and another coach are responsible for dispensing over-the-counter medications provided by parents for their children.

When the student returned to her classroom, her teacher noticed that she was visibly upset. When the girl refused to verbally state what happened, the teacher asked if she could write it down. The girl wrote that Dow had fondled and sexually assaulted her.

The teacher reported the alleged assault to the principle, who contacted the school’s headmaster, who then called the police.

Dow was arrested on campus Thursday. The offense report notes that Dow “immediately began apologizing” to the principal of the school as he was taken into custody.

Facts About Sexual Child Abuse

According to the Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network (RAINN), “child sexual abuse is not only a physical violation; it is a violation of trust and/or authority.”

Just like other forms of child abuse, child sexual abuse does not always involve physical contact. Child sexual abuse includes any kind of sexual activity with a minor. This is because child cannot consent to any form of sexual activity, period. When a perpetrator has sexual contact, engages sexually explicit conversation, or exposes a child to sexually graphic material they are committing a crime that can have lasting effects on the victim.

According to RAINN, as many as 93 percent of sexual abuse victims under the age of 18 know their abuser. Common perpetrators of sexual child abuse include:

  • Family friends
  • Neighbors
  • Babysitters
  • Childcare providers
  • Coaches
  • Teachers
  • Music teachers
  • Boy Scout leaders
  • Youth group leaders
  • Church officials

What Should I Do if I Suspect a Child Is Being Sexually Abused?

Child sexual abuse is a crime that often goes undetected. If you suspect a child is being sexually abused, you have the power to make an enormous, positive difference in that child’s life. Here are steps to take if you think a child is a victim of sexual abuse:

  1. Recognize the signs, both physical and behavioral. This may include:
    • Depression or post-traumatic stress disorder
    • Bleeding, bruising, or swelling in the genital area
    • Frequent urinary or yeast infections
    • Pain, itching, or burning in genital area
    • Changes in hygiene (bathing too little, or too often)
    • Changes in sleep habits, including nightmares or bedwetting
    • Self-harming or expression of suicidal thoughts
    • Trouble in school, including absences or drops in grades
    • Shies away or feels threatened by physical contact
    • Overly protective of siblings (assumes a caretaker role)
  2. Talk to the child.
    • Choose a safe space away from the person you may suspect of causing the abuse.
    • Speak to the child in a casual, non-threatening tone to keep the child at ease.
    • Talk to the child directly, using words that the child will understand.
    • Avoid judgmental statements and questions and avoid blaming the child.
    • Be reassuring to the child and let them know that you are concerned for them.
  3. Report it to authorities.
    • Before reporting, tell the child you are going to talk to someone else who can help.
    • Make sure the child is in a safe place, and if you are concerned about the child’s safety, be sure to let the authorities know.
    • If you are not concerned that the parents are the ones causing harm, consult with them prior to reporting to authorities.

Contact an Experienced Child Abuse Attorney

If you believe that your child has been the victim of sexual abuse, contact Thomas J. Henry. For over two decades, Thomas J. Henry has been an advocate for sexually abused children across the state of Texas. Our experienced child injury lawyers are available 24/7, nights and weekends to take your call. Contact us today for a free legal consultation.

Two South Dakota Daycare Workers Arrested for Child Abuse

Two daycare employees in Sioux Falls, South Dakota were arrested Friday after surveillance video caught them abusing young children during nap time.

Detectives Describe Disturbing Child Abuse Footage

According to FOX 47 News, Teresa Gallagher, 31, and Kenedi Wendt, 22, were both charged with 25 counts of abuse or cruelty to a minor for repeatedly abusing your children during nap time.

A parent of a child who attended Little Blessings Learning Center in Sioux Falls told police of the abuse in February. The case was referred to the Department of Social Services who contacted the daycare who then reviewed the surveillance video.

Detectives who watched the disturbing footage described instances in which children were slammed to the ground, yanked by their arms, and stomped on. Investigators added that it wasn’t clear what was triggering the abuse, saying even a slight movement from a child could set of the workers.

The children in the video were between the ages 3 and 4.

National Child Abuse Statistics

The following information was provided by ABC News:

  • A total of 1,700 fatalities were attributed to child maltreatment in fiscal year 2016, a 7-percent increase from 1,589 the previous year.
  • The largest increases in child abuse-related fatalities were in Texas, where fatalities jumped from 162 to 217, and Indiana, where fatalities doubled from 34 to 70.
  • A commission created by Congress two years ago concluded that the U.S. lacks a coherent and effective strategy for recorded and reducing child abuse-related deaths. While annual deaths reported by the Department of Health and Human Services tend hover in the range of 1,500 to 1,600 per year, the commission suggested the true number of annual deaths may be as high as 3,000.
  • An estimated 70 percent of children killed in child abuse cases were under the age of 3.
  • It is estimated that 676,000 children were victims of abuse or neglect in 2016.

Contact an Experienced Child Injury Attorney

If you believe your child has suffered from physical or sexual abuse, contact Thomas J. Henry Injury Attorneys immediately. We have the knowledge and experience to handle your child’s case. We will also take immediate action to prevent any further mistreatment.

Our attorneys are available 24/7, nights and weekends. Your choice does matter. Contact our offices for immediate assistance. We represent clients/victims all over the country.

 

Murder Charges Filed in Schlitterbahn Water Slide Death

A co-owner of Schlitterbahn Waterparks and Resorts and a water slide designer have been arrested and charged with murder for the 2016 death of a 10-year-old boy who was decapitated while riding water slide at Schlitterbahn’s Kansas City park.

Three Indictments So Far in Tragic Schlitterbahn Death

According to the Chicago Tribune, the charges were filed Tuesday. The Kansas attorney general’s office identified the arrested individuals as Jeffrey Henry, 62, co-owner of Texas-based Schlitterbahn Waterparks and Resorts, and John Schooley, designer of the 17-story Verruckt water slide.

Both men are charged with reckless second-degree murder for the death of 10-year-old Caleb Schwab as well as charges related to the injuries of 13 other people on the slide. Second-degree murder carries a sentence of 9 years to 41 years.

Henry is being held in a Texas jail without bound as of Tuesday, pending extradition to Kansas; however, Schooley is not yet in custody.

Last week, a Kansas City jury indicted Tyler Austin Miles, the former operations manager of the Kansas City Schlitterbahn park, on 20 charges, including a single count of involuntary manslaughter.

Essential Design Steps Skipped as Park Rushed to Impress the Travel Channel

The indictments say that neither Henry nor Schooley possessed technical or engineering expertise related to amusement park rides, and that Henry made a “spur of the moment” decision to build the world’s tallest water slide in 2012 to impress the producers of a Travel Chanel show.

As the project was rushed along, the company building the water slide, Henry & Sons Construction Co., skipped essential steps in the design and building process.

The indictment contends that “not a single engineer was directly involved in Verruckt’s dynamic engineering or slide path design.” Further, when claims of airborne rafts emerged in news reports in 2014, a company spokesperson was sent out to discredit the claims as Henry and Schooley began “secretly testing at night to avoid scrutiny.”

In the 182 days the ride was in operation, 13 people suffered injuries, including temporary blindness and concussion, and one person was killed.

Contact an Experienced Amusement Park Accident Attorney

Amusement parks are intended to give families a fun, entertaining venue to have fun and relax. The last thing people should worry about when at an amusement park is their safety and the safety of their children. Regulation and oversight of fixed-site amusement parks can be lacking, which could lead to unsafe rides and experiences. If you or a loved one were injured while at an amusement park, contact Thomas J. Henry for a free case review.

Our experienced amusement park injury lawyers are available 24/7, nights and weekends to take your call. Thomas J. Henry has offices located in Corpus ChristiSan Antonio, and Houston, serving clients across Texas and nationwide.

Police Investigate Daycare Center After Toddler Burned by Hot Bath

Police say a toddler suffered burn injuries after she was given a hot bath at a Belleville daycare center.

About the Child’s Burn Injuries

According to WNEM, the 2-year-old was scalded while being given a bath at Kolor Wheels Daycare in the 1800 block of North Belt West at around 9:30 pm Monday.

The child was taken to the hospital where she was treated for second-degree burns. The burns covered her backside and stretched down her legs. The mother of the girl was upset to learn that Kolor Wheels daycare was already under investigation for another incident.

Authorities are investigating the incident and seeking out witnesses or anyone with information.

Details of the Austin Daycare Lawsuit

Following an investigation by the Travis County Sheriff’s Office and Child Protective Services, CPS reported that The Goddard School must address the door to protect children from future injuries.

The family is now seeking damages in connection with their child’s injuries and resulting delayed development. In a statement, McGivney stated that the day was cool, at about 75 degrees, when the accident occurred and wondered how the door could have gotten so hot.

Currently, teachers are testing the doors each time they are outside to make sure they are not too hot. They also attempted to cover the door with laminated posters, but were unsuccessful.

Contact an Experienced Daycare Injury Attorney

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. We have offices in Corpus Christi, San Antonio, Houston, and Austin, Texas. Call for a free case review.

Austin Daycare Sued After Baby Suffers Severe Burns on Hands

An Austin family has filed a lawsuit against The Goddard School daycare after their baby suffered severe burns on both of his hands. The daycare says he suffered the burns after touching a hot door.

About the Child’s Burn Injuries

According to KVUE, Jenny McGivney received a call in October that her 11-month-old baby, Aiden, had burned his finger on a door while at The Goddard School on FM 620 in West Travis County.

When McGivney asked about the severity, the daycare told her that Aiden was fine and that there was no rush to get to the daycare. However, upon arriving, McGivney found her son screaming while holding out both of his hands, each covered with large yellow blisters.

She immediately rushed her son to a pediatrician next door to the daycare. The pediatrician advised her to take Aiden to the hospital immediately. Upon arriving to the hospital in Round Rock, the doctor contacted the burn hospital in San Antonio.

Aiden was transported via ambulance and underwent surgery on his hands. He has since undergone multiple procedures and will have to wear protective gloves for up to a year.

Details of the Austin Daycare Lawsuit

Following an investigation by the Travis County Sheriff’s Office and Child Protective Services, CPS reported that The Goddard School must address the door to protect children from future injuries.

The family is now seeking damages in connection with their child’s injuries and resulting delayed development. In a statement, McGivney stated that the day was cool, at about 75 degrees, when the accident occurred and wondered how the door could have gotten so hot.

Currently, teachers are testing the doors each time they are outside to make sure they are not too hot. They also attempted to cover the door with laminated posters, but were unsuccessful.

Contact an Experienced Daycare Injury Attorney

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. We have offices in Corpus Christi, San Antonio, Houston, and Austin, Texas. Call for a free case review.

 

 

Daycare Workers Charged with Giving Melatonin-Laced Candy to Toddlers

Three Des Plaines daycare workers have been charged with child endangerment after allegedly feeding toddlers gummy bears laced with melatonin in order to get them to calm down for nap time.

Details of the Daycare Workers’ Charges

According to CBS Local, the incidents occurred at the Kiddie Junction Daycare Center. Police responded to the scene on Friday afternoon.

A manager at the center told authorities that one of the teachers had been distributing gummy bears laced with melatonin to her class of 2-year-olds without getting parents’ approval. Upon conducting a search, police found four gummy bears left in a bottle that had contained 120.

Three teachers at the center were taken into custody. During questioning, all three admitted to giving the children the melatonin-laced gummy bears. The teachers reportedly did not believe their actions were inappropriate as melatonin is an over-the-counter sleep aid.

The arrested teachers have been identified as Kristen Lauletta, 32, Jessica Heyse, 19, and Ashley Helfenbein, 25. All have been charged with two counts of child endangerment and two counts of battery.

Daycare Injury Statistics

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, at least six out of ten — nearly 13 million — infants, toddlers and preschool children are enrolled in daycare. These centers are supposed to be providing substitute care for your children, but sadly we find that sometimes they may cause more harm than good.

  • According to the CPSC, approximately 31,000 children under age 4 are treated in U.S. hospital emergency rooms for injuries at child care settings on average.
  • 8% of the child care settings had cribs that did not meet current safety standards.
  • 24% of the child care settings did not have safe playground surfacing.
  • 13% of the child care settings did not use child safety gates where necessary.
  • 26% of the child care settings had loops on the window blind cords.
  • 5% of the child care settings had products that had been recalled by CPSC.

Contact an Experienced Daycare Injury Attorney

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. We have offices in Corpus Christi, San Antonio, Houston, and Austin, Texas. Call for a free case review.

 

School Bus Driver Convicted of Negligent Homicide in Crash that Killed 6 Children

A Tennessee man has been convicted of six counts of criminally negligent homicide for his role in a 2016 school bus crash that left six elementary school students dead.

Bus Driver Was on His Cell Phone When the Fatal Crash Occurred

According to CNN, Johnthony Walker was transporting 37 students from Woodmore Elementary School in Chattanooga, Tennessee when he lost control of the bus, causing it to flip over and crash into a tree. Six children between the ages of 6 and 10 were killed in the collision.

An investigation suggested Walker was traveling more than 20 mph over the posted speed limit and was distracted by his phone at the time of the incident. A colleague of Walker’s, Takiesha Nixon, said she was on the phone with Walker for about four minutes before the crash occurred, but hung up as soon as she learned Walker was driving.

Walker originally faced a total of 34 charges, including six counts of vehicular homicide, various assault charges, and charges relating to reckless endangerment and reckless driving.

Defense Claims “White Bus” Contributed to the Crash

As the prosecution pursued their case against Walker, the defense cited a mysterious white bus which was traveling in the opposite direction and veered into the same lane as Walker’s bus.

The defense claimed that the claims of the white bus were never properly investigated, with authorities not taking the alleged white bus into consideration when examining evidence at the scene or taking eye witnesses accounts.

Breakdown of the Jury’s Verdict

In the case of Johnthony Walker, the jury found the following:

  • Guilty on 6 counts of criminal negligent homicide
  • Guilty on 11 charges of reckless aggravated assault
  • Guilty on 7 charges of assault
  • Guilty of reckless endangerment
  • Guilty of reckless driving
  • Guilty of the use of a portable electronic device by a school driver
  • Not guilty on 6 counts of assault

Sentencing for Walker is currently scheduled for April 24.

Contact an Experienced School Bus Accident Attorney

Thomas J. Henry Injury Attorneys are available to respond to school bus accidents at any hour, day or night. Our lawyers understand that the immediate acquisition, or acquiring, of evidence is paramount to understanding how the accident occurred. Remember, your choice does matter. If your child was injured in a school bus accident, contact our offices – we are available 24/7, nights and weekends and we represent clients/victims all over the country.

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