Woman being charged in deadly day care fire

Jessica Tata, 22, her reportedly turned herself in to face charges following last month's deadly daycare fire.

February 28, 2011 3:52:59 AM PST
The owner of the home day care at the center of a deadly fire last week will face criminal charges. We were first to break the news Sunday night here on abc13.com. The Harris County District Attorney's Office says it's planning to file at least one charge against the woman who was running the day care.

The day care provider, 22-year-old Jessica Tata, will be charged with one count of reckless bodily injury to a child with serious bodily injury. Prosecutors say they will ask for no bond.

Balloons swayed in the wind Sunday night at the Crest Park Lane scene where Thursday's fire started, as the Jackie's Day Care provider is facing charges.

"It's not enough," said Ana Bohorquez, a friend of one of the victim's families. "She needs to be more conscious."

Among the questions investigators have been trying to answer is whether Jessica Tata, 22, was even at the home with the seven children when the fire started. It's something neighbors have questioned, too.

"When you care for people's children, you must be very careful, stay with them all the time," said neighbor Amy Chang. "That's the way it's supposed to be."

The smoky fire killed four children and injured three more, all of them are under three years of age. Two of the surviving children remain in critical condition. Keshia Brown lost her 18-month-old son, Elias Castillo.

We spoke with her regarding the charges over the phone, where she said of Tata she is, "Happy she is getting justice, but the loss of her son left a mark on everyone's life and no one can replace him."

Many of the family members want more answers as they face the difficult task of planning funerals for their children this week.

While those who have come by the former home day care see a building with some damage, the loss too much to bear.

"She's gonna be sorry because it's four kids, destroyed four families," said Bohorquez. "It's terrible."

If convicted, Tata could face two to ten years on that charge. Prosecutors aren't commenting yet on the possibility of additional charges.