NBC Connecticut Investigates has exclusive new information about a month’s-long investigation into the abuse of preschoolers at a shoreline daycare.
Our investigative team obtained new documents in connection with the case at the Killingworth Kid’s Center that was initiated in June.
Back then, one of the children going there told a parent that a staff member had touched him in his private parts. Other parents were contacted, resulting in reports to state police of as many as seven potential victims, according to state paperwork.
A parent of one of the children spoke exclusively with us. She did not want to be identified to keep her child anonymous.
“I trusted these people. When my child cried every day, going to school. When my child begged me to stay home from the Killingworth Kid’s Center. I trusted them that he was actually okay during the day like they told me,” she said.
The Office of Early Childhood (OEC) and the Department of Children and Families (DCF) had a parallel investigation, that is now complete, and resulted in a finding that the abuse and neglect of an unspecified number of preschool boys did take place.
NBC Connecticut Investigates obtained redacted documents from that investigation through a Freedom of Information Request.
The documents indicate an entry level employee at the center would watch classes during naptime, usually sitting on the floor with the kids.
Most staff members interviewed by the OEC said he was never left alone with them, and none reported seeing him touch a child at the center.
Two staff members detailed on one occasion, the alleged suspect, a young man in his 20s, appeared aroused when he stood up after being on the floor with the napping students.
They told OEC investigators that they reported this to the center director, who in a witness statement provided by the OEC said she “was notified after the fact and did not address.”
Potential victims from the center were interviewed by the Yale Child Abuse Clinic, and an unspecified number said they had been touched by the young man supervising them at naptime, according to the OEC documents. Other children said they were witnesses.
The parent we spoke with added she removed her son from the daycare and that he has been getting better, slowly.
“The emotional, medical trauma that this has inflicted on a child…is substantial. It’s substantial. And while we’re making progress, healing is not linear,” she said.
An investigation by state police remains ongoing. Investigators are meeting with prosecutors later this week.
The Office of Early Childhood wrote in its final report that Killingworth Kid’s Center has made some changes, including staff retraining, cameras have been installed in classrooms and the alleged offender no longer works there.
The OEC said it is negotiating a resolution with the Killingworth Kid’s Center attorney. The DCF said it cannot disclose the outcome of its work.
The attorney for the Killingworth Kid’s Center has not given us a comment or statement on the latest information. Back in July, he told us, “We’re cooperating with the authorities. It’s a family-owned business, we continue to follow all appropriate rules to keep the kids safe.”