LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE/Gray News) – Two parents wonder what kind of liability a Louisville daycare center received after their young daughter’s hands were tied by an employee.
“She’s adorable, she’s sweet, she’s kind,” Nina Colvin said of her daughter.
“She wrapped me around her finger,” Nina’s husband Chris Colvin added.
The Colvins thought their daughter, who had just turned 4 at the time, would adjust and do well in daycare. They found a place, officially known as Outer Loop Child Care.
One day in April 2021, their bubbly 4-year-old seemed a little off.
“She said ‘Mom, Miss Miah hit me today,'” Nina Colvin recalled. “And I was like, ‘Wait, what?’ She said, ‘No, like taping me.’ She made, like, duct tape around her arms.
Surveillance video showed the caregiver of their baby girl kneeling on a table and missing a shoe.
It also showed what their daughter had described: the employee, Ramiah Douglas, binding the girl’s hands with duct tape during naptime.
Attorneys for the Colvins said she was left with her hands tied for about 40 minutes.
“She was my child and I wasn’t there to protect her,” Chris Colvin said.
“It changed his personality,” described Nina Colvin. “She’s terrified that someone will hurt her again.”
Douglas was fired immediately. But the incident was just the beginning of what the Colvins would discover about the employee, WAVE reported.
According to court records, she was previously arrested for possession of marijuana, which was either amended or dismissed, four separate citations for not having a valid registration or license plate, and a charge of prostitution.
That charge was also dismissed after she agreed not to post on Backpage, a classifieds site seized by the US Department of Justice in 2018 after it facilitated several counts of prostitution, according to court records.
Although Douglas’ previous citations did not cost her jail time, the Colvins are still waiting to hear what qualifications she had to work with children.
“I wouldn’t have hired that woman,” Chris Colvin said.
Douglas was arrested and convicted of tying the child’s hands after Nina Colvin called the police.
It’s unclear if Outer Loop Child Care, which has since sold out, has ever done any background research on Douglas.
What is clear is that the daycare had a history of not performing or maintaining any criminal background check records on its employees, according to the Kentucky Cabinet of Health and Family Services.
Read a Kentucky daycare’s inspection record.
WAVE found three other times state inspectors wrote to the center for this. In fact, the center has recorded over 50 offenses in less than 10 years.
They included poorly maintained employee records, a lack of state-required training or evaluations, and four repeated violations for lack of evidence or expired TB vaccines.
“You put them in a professional facility, and they let us down,” Nina Colvin said.
Other violations were repeated, such as having bleach and cleaning chemicals accessible to children, dirty toys, and holes in the wall where slugs and birds had taken up residence, to name a few. only a few.
For two consecutive years, they were also written for unsanitary and torn diaper changing stations.
Keeping tabs on themselves was something the Colvins couldn’t do in March 2020.
“We weren’t allowed in anymore because of COVID,” Nina Colvin said. “We had to stop at the door.”
But, despite the seemingly thorough inspections, the state continued to renew Outer Loop Child Care’s license.
On the state daycare inspection portal, there is no mention of fines, suspensions, or revocations.
This is after state records showed violations of a child’s shoulder being dislocated by an employee, another child burned from being dragged on the carpet, a child’s head smacking in a bed and another student locked in the bathroom for seven minutes as punishment, all under the same owner who fired those employees each time.
“Did anyone’s parents know about these violations, because they reported them to the parents or did they just write them down and stick them in a drawer?” asked Chris Colvin.
The violations continued until Outer Loop Child Care was sold. Despite this, his most recent condition rating still shows three out of five stars.
As for the Colvins, they hope the pandemic and what they see as a lack of accountability won’t put more children at risk.
“If you don’t meet that standard, you don’t have a license,” Chris Colvin said. “It’s that simple.”
“You have our most important asset, our child,” added Nina Colvin. “You have to do better.”
Outer Loop Child Care has since been sold to a new company. The new owner said they had nothing to do with the daycare’s past and started from scratch.
Douglas’ attorney declined to comment. WAVE is still awaiting a response from the state and Outer Loop Child Care’s attorney.
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