Toddler slips out of day care center, prompting investigation

Heritage Children's Day Care Center
September 13, 2013 3:38:43 PM PDT
Child care licensing is investigating a day care center in Katy after a toddler slipped out of the front doors by himself.

Shelly Hayes recalled, "We saw this little boy running through this parking lot here."

Hayes is a mom of two toddlers, so she says when she spotted a child running loose in a parking lot, she was terrified.

"I realized the second I saw him that it was so close I absolutely could have (hit him with my car)," she said.

Hayes went door to door trying to find where the little boy came from. He was too young to speak. It turns out he'd slipped out of day care, and past at least two doors.

Hayes said, "As a parent, knowing he was in the care of people who just weren't watching after him, it was devastating.'

"I can confirm that child care licensing is investigating a concern of supervision of a child at Heritage," said CPS spokesperson Gwen Carter.

We went to Heritage Children's Day Care Center for an explanation. They wouldn't talk to us in person, but over the phone, the owner called what happened 'extremely unfortunate.' She says they notified parents and the Fort Bend County Sheriff's Office.

"All of them are really nice but I don't know about this incident," said parent Garima Dasgupta, whose two-year-old child attends Heritage Children's Day Care. "She did tell me now."

Child Protective Services says the day care owner is cooperating with the investigation. The Fort Bend County Sheriff's Office says there's no police report because the child didn't get far and was not harmed.

Parent Tiara Hawkins said, "It doesn't matter if he wasn't out there long. The fact is, he was out there and something could have happened."

Hayes is glad nothing happened to the child, but thinks action should be taken against Heritage Children's Day Care Center.

"It's a big deal," Hayes said. "I don't think you get a second chance when it comes to the life and the safety of a child."

We looked into the history of the day care. There are 21 deficiencies listed over the past two years. They've all been corrected. There are no other instances of children left unsupervised.

CPS told us the day care's last inspection was at the end of August and they passed.

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