2 Arizona children bitten while at different daycare facilities
PHOENIX — In unrelated yet disturbingly similar incidents, two toddlers came home from Arizona daycare facilities recently with multiple bite marks on their bodies.
One incident occurred last week in Maricopa, and the other was reported in Tucson in February.
Sunrise Preschools said in a Facebook post the employee who was watching the children at its Maricopa facility was suspended without pay after the April 25 incident.
The toddler’s mother, Rocio Enriquez, wrote in a Facebook post that the girl had about eight bite marks all over her back, leaving large red marks and breaking the skin in some places.
“I was upset and I get it, kids are going to be kids, but when I picked [sic] checked my daughter out she had about 8 bite marks all over her back … how can you justify this?” she wrote.
The facility said the incident “was heartbreaking and unacceptable and we are working diligently to ensure it does not happen again,” part of the post from President Dana Vela read.
“We are reviewing all policies and procedures and will take whatever steps are needed to prevent this rare but serious matter from repeating itself.”
A video of the incident confirmed the injuries, which the facility said happened “very quickly and while the caregiver was changing a diaper.
“This is not meant to excuse the incident but to explain what happened,” the post read. “We can and will do better and this unfortunate matter has provided some hard learned lessons.”
The child who attacked the toddler has since been expelled from the facility.
Sunrise said it is following internal policies and procedures and licensing regulations and employment law requirements, as well as taking additional steps to prevent a similar incident from happening.
Meanwhile, a Tucson mother took to Facebook on Sunday to say authorities didn’t do anything when her daughter was bitten more than 25 times shortly after enrolling at Creative Beginnings Preschool.
Alice Bryant posted three photos showing red splotches all over the girl’s back and shoulders along with a doctor’s report saying the marks were caused by human bites.
Bryant said the daycare center didn’t call her when her daughter was bitten or say anything about it when she picked her up.
She said she filed a police report and notified the Arizona Department of Health Services, but the case was closed without results.
However, Tucson police and DHS both say the investigation is ongoing.
Officer Ray Smith, a Tucson police spokesman, told KTAR News 92.3 FM the department has been investigating the daycare since the Feb. 26 incident, but “no charges or arrests have been made as of yet.”
In a statement to Tucson TV station KOLD 13, DHS said it was investigating the incident but could not comment on pending investigations.
A woman at Creative Beginnings told the TV station the claims were unsubstantiated and declined to say anything further.
KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Ashley Flood contributed to this report.
Arizona open and hiring: If you’re looking for job openings, visit ktar.com/arizonahiring.
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