Two daycare workers fired, one charged with assault for hitting child

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CLEVELAND — A daycare worker was fired and charged with assault stemming from a Tuesday incident where the mother of a 1-year-old says she saw video of her child being struck by an adult responsible for his care.

“I went to my son’s daycare and I seen the actual video of her walking up to him and just smacking him right in the face,” said the boy’s mother, who did not want to be identified.

According to court records, Candice Linder was arraigned Friday and will make another court appearance next week.

The owner of Brown’s Town of Tiny Tots on Union in Cleveland said he is “shocked and upset,” and adds this type of behavior is not something they condone. The owner declined to give his name but said they are cooperating with the investigation.

When asked, he could not provide details as to when Linder was hired. He said this type of behavior has not occurred in the past.

“I was angry,” explained the boy’s grandmother, who did not want to be identified. “I was furious. I was livid. I couldn’t believe it.”

She added, “I sent him there thinking he was in good hands. All the people I met, they were older ladies, they were nice. That’s the reason why I sent him there; for him to be mistreated like that, that was dead wrong and they all knew about it. They didn’t say anything.”

An administrator at the daycare confirms a second unnamed employee was also fired due to the incident. The administrator said state officials who issue licenses for daycare facilities have reviewed the video.

According to the child’s family, they participate in a program where the county pays for the boy to go to daycare. A county spokesperson was contacted for comment.

The boy’s mother said when she noticed marks on his face she was initially given excuses by Linder as to how he was injured.

“Said she didn’t know. Maybe it was a scratch, maybe he did it; his nails was long—just making up excuses,”said the child’s mother.

The child’s family said the surveillance video was not initially shown in full by Linder. The next day, the boy’s mother, after repeated attempts, was able to view the portion where her child was struck.

Since the incident, the child’s family said he has healed. But now they question the safety of the daycare and have a message for other parents.

“If you can, keep your kids close to you with family and close friends and that’s it.”

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