Day care workers refuse to treat toddler with severe burns

Apparently, three employees of the Discovering Basics day care center in Clermont, Georgia, need to go back to basics themselves. On June 13, a 16-month-old boy named Damon was badly burned while under the so-called "supervision" of day care workers. Rather than treat the child's injuries, the employees panicked and lied about the incident, in turn failing to provide the boy with any medical attention.

His mother, Megan Seabolt, says the burns were not treated until she picked up her child from the center eight hours later. Alarmed, Seabolt raced to the nearest hospital. Her toddler's condition worsened overnight, and he was diagnosed with second and third degree burns, ultimately being treated with skin grafts.


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In addition to turning a blind eye to the boy's injuries, day care employees Eddye Pittmon, 55, and Tara Miller, 40, lied to Seabolt, suggesting that his wounds were the result of bug bites. The only medical attention little Damon received was the ointment that Pittmon claims to have applied to the boy's stomach and legs. Both employees have been charged with child cruelty.

As if this weren't enough ammunition for Georgia's Department of Early Care to shut down the day care center, investigators discovered that the establishment's owner, 66-year-old Minnie "Sue" Dupree, instructed her employees to lie about the incident and destroy any documents that could prove incriminating. She's now facing criminal charges for influencing testimony.

The cause of the boy's burns remains unclear, but Seabolt's attorney speculates that the tot might have been scalded by boiling water from a crock pot used to warm up baby bottles.

This entire case is mind-boggling. After all, most states require day care center employees to undergo CPR and First Aid training, so it's more than likely that Pittmon and Miller knew how to proceed but simply chose not to do so out of fear of losing their jobs. Their negligence and self-serving attitudes led to a child going through a traumatic experience that could have been avoided had they addressed his injuries immediately and, moreover, watched him closely to avoid the accident in the first place.

Images via Thinkstock, CBS46

Topics: abuse  day care  burns  child abuse  investigation