Florida Daycare Worker Charged After 4 Toddlers Suffer Broken Legs On The Same Day
Cops say Christina Marie Curtis, 25, faces four felony counts stemming from the May 21 incident, and is banned from being alone with kids.
VALPARAISO, FL — A Florida daycare worker has been arrested and charged after four toddlers in her care suffered broken legs in a single day, according to law enforcement.
Christina Marie Curtis, 25, reportedly faces four felony counts of child neglect resulting in great bodily harm following the incident that took place on May 21 at Kids Discovery Learning Center in Valparaiso.
According to an arrest report, four boys, who ranged in age from 13 to 21 months old, were all “fine” when they were dropped off that day and assigned to the one-year-old classroom at the facility.
The report then states, “Upon returning to pick them up in the afternoon, the children were showing signs of distress and could not stand or walk. The children were medically evaluated and each was diagnosed with fractures to their legs.”
From there, the arrest document goes on: “Surveillance footage showed Curtis, 25, walking with one of the victims, an 18-month-old, while holding his hands above his head. The defendant stopped and quickly moved her hands to (his) upper arms and rapidly jerked him into the air. When (he) was picked up, his feet and legs were in the air and was dropped feet first into a wagon. Other children were placed in the wagon and it was pulled outside.”
In addition, according to police, after one boy woke up from a nap, “The teacher attempted to place him on his feet, however, (he) was unable to bear weight on his legs.” The teacher then allegedly had to tell Curtis more than once to report the situation to the front desk.
Talking to The Panama City News Herald, Terika Graham, identified as the mother of one of the injured children, said she told Curtis to keep her son inside that day because he had a rash.
However, Graham said, her son was taken outside anyway, stating, “When I picked him up he had dirt all in his hair. I don’t know if they let him crawl around out there or what. It took the daycare three days to give me any kind of explanation.”
Graham’s child allegedly suffered a hairline fracture. She told the newspaper, “His balance is still a little funny, but I believe that will get better soon.”
The parents of another boy with a broken leg were reportedly informed that their son had fallen over one of his classmates.
The arrest report additionally notes that one of the toddlers appeared to have sustained a previous fracture around May 8, “shortly after the defendant began working in the class.”
The report states, “The defendant denied knowing how the injuries occurred and believed they could have happened either at home or in the playground. She has observed several children fall out of playground cars or other items.”
Police said that Curtis was arrested on July 20 and let go the following day after she posted a $4,000 bond. Reportedly, the stipulations of Curtis’s release dictate that she is to have no unsupervised contact with any minor and that she cannot be employed at any schools or other child-care facilities.
Read more: The Panama City News Herald, CBS Miami, WFTS, Northwest Florida Daily News