South Miami-Dade day care sued again over sex abuse allegations
(MIAMI HERALD) For the second time this month, a South Miami-Dade day care facility has been accused of negligence for reportedly allowing a teenage boy to molest little girls last year, widening fears that the abuse was rampant.
According to a lawsuit filed in Miami-Dade Circuit Court on Tuesday, Discovery Day Care Inc. should be held accountable for failing to prevent an employee’s 13-year-old son from fondling a 5-year-old girl.
That same teen, only referred to as “R.S.” in court documents, previously admitted to molesting another 5-year-old girl last year and was ordered to receive counseling. That girl’s mother — whose name has been kept secret by her attorney — filed a lawsuit earlier this month claiming the center failed to supervise and keep safe its preschool-age children. It alleges that her daughter was forced to perform oral sex on the teen on 10 separate occasions during mandatory nap times in early 2008.
After the first girl’s lawsuit received local media attention, other parents came forward claiming their children were also abused at the day care, according to attorney Adam Horowitz.
“We believe this was a house of horrors,” Horowitz said.
The lawsuit filed Tuesday claims the teen kissed the second girl’s mouth, exposed himself to her and fondled her. When he tried to force himself on her during nap time, she reported it to her mother, who alerted police to the boy’s actions.
That act prompted an investigation last year that led to the teen pleading guilty in February to two counts of battery and was sentenced to adolescent sexual behavior counseling, 100 community service hours and probation until February 2011. He also was given stay-away orders and a curfew, according to the state attorney’s office.
But Horowitz said that wasn’t enough.
“He didn’t serve a day in jail,” he said, adding that because the case was not isolated, “there really was a sense that justice wasn’t done.”
The family-owned center, located at 3153 SW 67th Ave., reportedly remains in operation. The day care’s director, Kathryn Baril, declined comment but said the center hired an attorney.