LANCASTER – An investigation is under way into possible abuse by a caregiver who was caught on video allegedly hitting a special-needs child at a Lancaster Park.
Video of the alleged abuse — which occurred about 4:30 p.m. Friday, June 14, at Tierra Bonita Park in the 44900 block of 27th Street East — was posted on social media. It shows a 9-year-old girl, whose mother reported the alleged abuse, apparently being struck by a caregiver. [View a portion of the video on Fox11 here.]
According to Fox11, the girl is autistic, non-verbal and has cerebral palsy.
“The initial investigation by Lancaster Station patrol deputies indicate that the adult seen striking the child in the video is the day care provider of the child,” according to a news release by the Sheriffs Information Bureau. “The day care facility is located in the city of Palmdale.”
Detectives with the sheriff’s Special Victims Bureau are investigating the case in conjunction with the California Department of Community Care and Licensing and the Department of Children and Family Services.
“When I watched it I was more in shock,” the girl’s mother, Ashley Holmes, told Fox11. “My daughter is just sitting there and she doesn’t fight back, doesn’t cry, so to me it’s like if she’s doing that in public how long has she been doing this? Has she been doing stuff to her in private?”
According to Fox11, state records from the Department of Social Services show the caregiver in the video has been cited nine times, including five times for immediate health or safety issues, most recently in March when an unattended child was burned on an arm by a heater in the woman’s bathroom.
Anyone with information regarding this case is urged to contact the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, Special Victims Bureau toll free tip line at 877-710-5273 or by email at email@example.com.