Category Archives: Parenting

MD HS Coach Accused Of Child Sexual Abuse

.jpg photo of Baltimore high school Coach accused of child sex abuse
Ernest Jackson, Mercy High School former part-time coach.

Mercy High School sends out letter to parents amid former coach’s Child Abuse charges

BALTIMORE, MD  –  Mercy High School officials sent out a letter to parents following news of its former athletic coach being charged with child sexual abuse.

The statement says “we continue to be deeply upset as we learn additional information from media reports about our former part-time coach Ernest Jackson. The details of the charges against Mr. Jackson revealed in local news coverage early this evening are very disturbing to our entire community—our students, parents, faculty and staff, board, alumnae and friends.”

Officials say that Ernest Jackson was a part-time coach for indoor track, outdoor track and soccer.  He coached at the school on a seasonal basis, beginning in November 2015 until last month.  He is no longer a coach and he was reportedly banned from campus when the school learned of a report of abuse before Thanksgiving.

Jackson has reportedly been released on bail.  School officials say “Student safety has been and always will be of paramount importance to us.  I want you to know that in our hiring process we comply with all federal, state and local employment laws.  All candidates for employment are interviewed, and their references are carefully checked.  Candidates also undergo a fingerprint criminal background check through the FBI’s Criminal Justice Identification Services (C.J.I.S) Division.

The C.J.I.S. system provides automatic updates to the school if employees are subsequently charged with crimes flagged by the C.J.I.S system.  The results of background checks are carefully reviewed.  The school regularly provides safe environments training for child and youth protection to employees.

Our first responsibility is to the safety and privacy of our girls.  We must balance transparency with student privacy, and I thank you for understanding and respecting this.  In addition, because there is an ongoing criminal investigation that involves child sexual abuse, we are limited in what we can share, as we respect the legal process and must not interfere with an ongoing criminal case.”

Anyone with information on the case is asked to call Baltimore Police’s Child Abuse Unit at 443-984-7378 or Metro Crime Stoppers at 1-866-7LOCKUP

Hazing Or Rite Of Passage? I Don’t Think So

.jpg photo of town where high school players are accused of sexual assaault
Four 15-year-old Maryland high school football players charged as adults with rape for sexually assaulting four teammates with a broom during a hazing incident.

Maryland high school football players
accused of sexually assaulting
teammates with broom

DAMASCAS, MD  –  Four 15-year-old Maryland high school football players charged as adults with rape for sexually assaulting four teammates with a broom during a hazing incident have been released on bond.

The Damascus High School athletes, whom NBC News is not identifying, were each charged with one count of first-degree rape, three counts of attempted rape and one count of conspiracy to commit rape, Montgomery County State’s Attorney John McCarthy said.

Each of the students was released Tuesday on $20,000 bond, according to court records.  They are not allowed on the premises of Damascus High School, and they are not allowed to contact one another, McCarthy said.

A fifth teammate is accused of participating in at least one of the attacks and being charged as a juvenile but is also identified as one of four victims, charging documents show.

One of the alleged victims told police that the suspects held him down, pulled his pants down and poked his buttocks with a broomstick before “the broomstick was inserted into his anus a few inches,” prosecutors said.

Two of the victims said they were violently attacked, but were able to fight off the assailants before they “got the broom,” prosecutors said.

Another victim said a broomstick, which he described as a wooden handle with a “cut on the tip of it” said he was “stabbed” on the buttocks with the broomstick. When that victim tried to fight the attack, the suspects told him it was “tradition,” he told police.

When interviewed by investigators, one of the suspects said the broom “started from generations ago,” according to prosecutors, who said freshmen were the ones targeted.

Montgomery County State’s Attorney John McCarthy said citing tradition is not a defense.

“I’m offended by the term hazing.  It’s not hazing, these are crimes, and I would caution anyone to refer to this as hazing.  These boys were victims of criminal acts,” McCarthy said.  “They were not victims of hazing, they were victims of first-degree rapes.”

The alleged rapes and attempted rapes happened on Oct. 31, according to the court documents.  Damascus High School’s principal reported the possible assaults to police on Nov. 1.

Montgomery County Public School District Superintendent Jack Smith said in a statement that the district is cooperating with police and providing support for Damascus High School students.

“Our thoughts are with the students, staff and all who have been affected,” Smith said.

TX Child Suffers Violent Assault At DayCare

.jpg photo of employee accused of Child Abuse at Daycare
Tracy Ludwig

North Texas Daycare Worker Charged
With Child Abuse

HASLET, TX (CBSDFW.COM)  –  A North Texas daycare worker faces a felony child abuse charge for a violent assault caught on video.

Those who run the Little Country Daycare and Preschool in Haslet are not talking about the arrest of employee, Tracy Ludwig.

They did say they were cooperating with authorities but could not comment any further.

The alleged abuse came to light when a 4-year-old’s mother demanded to see security video because no one could explain how he got serious facial injuries.

In the video an adult straddles a small boy on the floor and repeatedly slaps and pinches him.

Kindsie Andreason, the child’s mother, obtained the video of her son being assaulted inside the Little County Daycare and Preschool.

It was recorded on November 6 when he came home with welts and bruises that she was told were caused by him acting up.

Authorities investigated and arrested Ludwig for felony child abuse.

Andreason says she can only wonder if her son was assaulted more than once in his two years at the school before she removed him.

“Whenever we were watching the video outrage just went over me, I mean just to see your son being beat by a teacher that you pay to care for your kid while you’re at work.  It makes me sick,” said Andreason.

Andreason says she likely would’ve never known about the abuse if not for a teacher who alerted her.

She believes the daycare management tried to conceal what happened and that’s why she posted the video on social media and plans to sue the daycare.

This is not the first complaint about inappropriate discipline at Little Country Daycare and Preschool.  The CBS 11 I-Team found the center was issued four violations earlier this year.  Two of the violations were even considered “high risk.”

The violations stem from an incident in May when an employee force-fed a child, according to an inspection report provided by Texas Health and Human Services.

The report states after the child vomited, the employee yelled for the child to leave the room, then tossed a towel to the child to clean up the mess.

While staff informed the child’s parents about the incident, Little Country did not tell the state.  The lack of oversight resulted in a third violation.

A fourth violation was issued over missing paperwork.

State inspectors gave the daycare a week and a half to fix the issues.

A second report acknowledges Little Country complied with changes. Administrators acknowledged that children can’t be forced to eat and employees interacted with kids in a “positive manner,” according to an inspection report.

In Texas, licensed childcare facilities must be inspected at least once a year by The Department of Health and Human Services.

Information about these centers is posted online.

If centers face violations, they must also face more inspections.

Since 2015, Little Country has faced nine inspections.

A state database indicates the daycare was issued three violations in 2015 over record-keeping issues.

A look at a pair of inspection reports HERE

Kids Threatened With A Machete

.jpg photo of woman accused of child abuse
Ordene Christie, 50

Collier County nurse alerts deputies to
Child Abuse, prevents decapitation

NAPLES, FL  –  A nurse at Palmetto Elementary in Collier County tipped off deputies to an awful child abuse case.

While there are more than 3,000 reports of child abuse cases each year, according to Children’s Advocacy Center, it still shocks residents when these crimes happen against children living in Southwest Florida.

Christina Breen said she can’t begin to imagine what kind of person. “As a mom it hits home the worst,” Breen said.  “It’s heartbreaking.”

Collier County deputies said Ordene Christie is the kind of person who would harm a child.  Christie, 50, is accused of beating three kids under her care with a belt, stick and machete after they attempted to obtain food from the kitchen.

She even threatened to “chop off their hands and head.”

Her arrest report said the children tried to procure the food because they are never full.  All three children, who are ages 7, 8 and 9, are underweight.  The youngest weighs 41 pounds.

“I can’t even think about that,” Monica Thonday said, a neighbor.  “I don’t know, I have no idea — that’s insane.

A nurse at Palmetto Elementary ultimately saved their lives.  She noticed the bruising and proceeded to report it to deputies.

“It is comforting knowing people are looking out for children,” Breen said, “and are watching out for these things.”

The district policy states employees are required to report student abuse or neglect if they suspect — just like the nurse did.  All staff members are required to train with the Department of Children and Family Services on identifying abuse.

“You don’t know what someone’s mindset is,” Thonday said.  “You don’t know what they’re going to do to your kids.  You can’t trust everybody.”

If you know of or suspect child abuse, call the Florida Abuse Hotline.  It can be reached at 1-800-96 ABUSE (800-962-2873).  The agency is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.  Caller information is kept confidential.

Special Needs Child Locked In Basement Storage

.jpg photo of Child Abuse graphic
Special Needs Child locked In basement storage room.

Macy couple pleads not guilty to
Child Abuse

OMAHA, NE  –  A Macy, Nebraska, husband and wife have pleaded not guilty to locking a 10-year-old foster son in a basement storage room.

Krista Parker entered her plea Monday in U.S. District Court in Omaha to federal and state charges of kidnapping, child abuse/neglect and false imprisonment. Charles Parker pleaded not guilty to the same charges Thursday.

Trial dates have not been set.

According to court documents, authorities on Sept. 15 were called to the Parker home about a report of a boy locked in a storage room.

Officers found the boy locked in the dark, windowless room, amid trash, a few toys and human feces.  The room stunk of urine and feces, court documents said.

Krista Parker was found passed out upstairs, and a preliminary breath test showed her blood-alcohol content at 0.126 percent.

Parker confessed to locking the boy in the room a few hours earlier, court documents said, but denied confining the special-needs boy, who had been in her foster care for nine months, in the room previously.

Charles Parker told officers he was unaware that his wife had confined their son in the room that night, but he said that they occasionally locked the boy in the room for several hours and maybe for a night one time, court documents said.

The boy told a forensic interviewer that the storage room was his bedroom and that he slept on the floor because he did not have a bed.