Manatee day care worker arrested after toddler bites another child

Photos of an 18-month-old boy who was bitten at J’s Bright Learners day care center in Bradenton. Photo courtesy Amanda Beebe


MANATEE COUNTY, FL (WFLA/AP) — Sheriff’s detectives and child welfare authorities have arrested an employee at a Manatee County day care center after an 18-month-old boy was repeatedly bitten by another toddler.caci-renee-burke

Manatee Sheriff’s spokesman Dave Bristow says Thursday that 23-year-old Caci Renee Burke, an employee at J’s Bright Learners day care center in Bradenton, is facing charges of child neglect in the case.

The child’s mother, Amanda Beebe, said a day care worker said her little boy had been bitten once on August 26th by another child. She figured that happens with children. Then, three days later, they called her saying had been bitten again, many times, and that “it was bad.”

Beebe said she became hysterical when she saw her boy. He’s now recovering.

According to the Sheriff’s Office, Burke was responsible for the two children involved, both are 1 year old. Detectives say she put the children down for a nap, and went into another room at the daycare to check on other kids, including her niece, and to make lunch.

Photos of an 18-month-old boy who was bitten at J’s Bright Learners day care center in Bradenton. Photo courtesy Amanda Beebe
Photos of an 18-month-old boy who was bitten at J’s Bright Learners day care center in Bradenton. Photo courtesy Amanda Beebe

The Sheriff’s Office says she stayed in the other room the “hangout” with the staff. At some point, while Burke being gone, one child received visible bite marks on his cheeks, forehead, arms, and back.

She allegedly told detectives she needed to go into the other room because she’s “around 1 and 2-year-olds all day and needs to talk to an adult sometimes.”

“The fact of the matter is, the employee who was supposed to be watching these children wasn’t doing their job at the time,” said Manatee County Sheriff’s office spokesman Dave Bristow.

The Department of Children and Families released a statement:

‘What happened to this child is absolutely unacceptable. We are conducting a child care licensing investigation jointly with the child protection investigation division of the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office. The employee responsible for caring for the child at the time this incident took place is no longer with the facility.’

“You have to be very cognizant of day care centers. I think it’s a good general rule to check out day care centers, obviously, if you’re going to leave your children there,” said Bristow.

The child who attacked the little boy does not attend the facility anymore.

The victim’s mother has now hired an attorney.

READ MORE: Florida toddler bitten more than a dozen times at day care

Information from the Associated Press was included in this report.

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