Federal Way detectives and the state are investigating what happened to a 2-year-old girl whose hair was allegedly pulled out of her scalp while she was at daycare, her mother claimed in a Facebook post on Wednesday.
The daycare has since received shooting threats from commenters on her post, police said.
“When I say I’m mad I can’t even describe it I cried so hard and never felt so helpless in my life …,” wrote Chelsy Cooper in a Facebook post on Wednesday about the incident.
Cooper said in the post that she dropped off her toddler at Childtime in Federal Way, at 135 S. 312th St., on Wednesday and her daughter was injured some time that day. She posted a photo of the back of her daughter’s head that shows rows of braids affixed to her scalp. It appears at least three of the braids are being held up to indicate that they were pulled from her scalp, with a large bald patch underneath. Another picture also shows an injury to the inside of her daughter’s bottom lip.
“ … No one knows what happen to her at all no report or anything they wouldn’t let me check the cameras,” wrote Cooper.
Cooper told the Mirror that she has retained legal counsel and will “seek justice” for her daughter. Her attorney could not be reached for immediate comment.
In response to her Facebook post, some people commented that the “teachers would be shot” and made “numerous other threats of violence against the school and its staff,” said Federal Way police Commander Kurt Schwan. As a result, the Childtime manager called 911 on Wednesday night, reporting that the commenters created a safety concern for the school and staff, Schwan noted. An officer was on scene while the childcare was closing on Thursday evening to ensure everyone’s safety, he added.
Cooper called 911 on Wednesday to report that her daughter’s hair had been pulled out and that she had sustained a swollen lip, Schwan said.
He added the department’s Criminal Investigations Person Crimes Unit is investigating the incident, and has also reached out to Child Protective Services.
He said the young children at the daycare “were involved in hair pulling. So obviously they are way too young to be involved with criminal intent. However, with regard to supervision, that’s why this was referred to CPS.”
In her Facebook post, Cooper noted that Childtime has live video throughout the day “so I don’t know why I can’t roll the cameras back.”
She said Childtime staff’s “excuse” was that the incident happened because her daughter has beads in her hair.
Lydia Cisaruk, the director of communication for Childtime, said in a statement: “We take our responsibility as caregivers very seriously. When a concern is brought to our attention, we conduct a comprehensive review, and take any appropriate steps based on the findings.”
Cisaruk noted that the daycare center reported this concern to the Department of Children, Youth And Families (CPS) as well as state licensing in keeping with their processes.
“This situation is still being reviewed, and we are continuing to cooperate with the investigation,” the statement continues. “However, based on our internal review, we have not seen anything to indicate that the child’s hair had been pulled or that the child was harmed in any other way by students or staff members. We believe our protocols were followed. Nothing is more important to us than our children’s wellbeing.”
The Mirror will update this story when more information becomes available.