A 2-year-old girl is “traumatized” after her Florida day care locked her inside alone while workers went home for the day, her mom said.
The toddler’s mother, Stephanie Martinez, said she arrived at KinderCare Learning Center in Plantation around 6:30 p.m. Wednesday to find the doors locked and her child alone inside, NBC6 reported.
“She’s super traumatized,” Martinez told the station of the horror experience. “It’s not fair.”
In a call to 911, the frightened mom could be heard sobbing on the phone.
“This poor kid. I’m coming, OK?” Martinez was heard saying as she recorded a video on her phone of child inside without the lights on.
Firefighters pried opened the doors to reunite the mother and child, who was checked out by paramedics but didn’t require further medical treatment.
The mom told authorities she never received a call from the day care to pick up her daughter.
Police said the last two day care employees left at around 6:20 p.m., about 8 minutes before the mother arrived.
KinderCare issued a statement saying that they are investigating the incident.
“We take all concerns about children’s safety seriously and follow a specific protocol anytime an issue is raised,” the statement said. “Part of that protocol includes notifying our agency partners, like state licensing and Child Protective Services, as we did in this case. We also placed the staff members involved on administrative leave while we, and our agency partners, look into the concern further.”
The Broward Sheriff’s Office Child Protection Services and Plantation Police have also launched an investigation into the terrifying episode.
Martinez’s attorney, Mark DiCowden, said the mother is planning to file a lawsuit against the day care center.
“This entire event could’ve been avoided if KinderCare did not abandon their responsibilities and the toddler,” DiCowden told the outlet.
“What adds insult to injury is that nobody at KinderCare bothered to answer the phone in this emergency situation, they fail to apologize for their bad behavior and they fail to provide anything but a bad excuse for what happened.”
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