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Berlin Daycare Worker Charged with Felony Child Abuse and 14 Assault Counts After Baby’s Broken Leg at Berlin Education Station
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Berlin, MD – A tragic incident has rocked the community as a former daycare worker in Berlin, Heather Lynn Ward, has been charged with felony child abuse and multiple counts of assault. The charges come after an eight-month-old baby was brought to the hospital with a broken leg, prompting a thorough investigation into the daycare center at Berlin Activities Depot – Berlin Education Station located at 10008 Old Ocean City Blvd, Berlin, MD 21811.

Investigation Unveils Disturbing Details of Child Abuse in MD Daycare

The investigation, which began in November, revealed disturbing details surrounding the incident. The child’s mother reported that her baby was fine before attending the Berlin Activities Depot – Berlin Education Station daycare on November 1, 2023. The police visited the childcare facility and met with its director and teachers from the infant classroom known as the “Baby Buzzing Bees.”

According to charging documents, the staff claimed to be unaware of any incident leading to the child’s injury. However, investigators requested video surveillance footage from the classrooms the child had been in, specifically on November 1. The footage revealed shocking interactions between Heather Lynn Ward and the child. At 9:47 a.m., Ward was captured hitting the child twice with her left hand and then striking her five more times with her right hand.

Daycare Worker Terminated After Video Evidence Reveals Other Possible Child Abuse Victims

The video footage also unveiled concerning interactions between Ward and other children in the classroom. As a result, investigators requested that Ward be removed from the classroom until the investigation concluded. Subsequently, Ward was placed on leave and later terminated from her position.

A doctor’s evaluation on November 14 determined that the child’s injury was a buckle fracture resulting from an “impact/compression injury.” The evaluation stated that a significant amount of force had been applied to the child’s heel, causing the fracture.

Ward’s Response and Further Investigation Leading to Felony Child Abuse Charges

In December, when shown the video footage by the police, Ward claimed that she never intended to harm any of the children and denied causing the leg fracture. She mentioned that the staff at Education Station had reassured her that the child’s leg did not appear broken.

Parents of other children in Ward’s classroom on November 1 were also shown video footage of their children’s interactions with Ward. Additionally, in mid-January, police obtained video footage from the Bees classroom, covering the period from October 1 to November 13. The footage revealed numerous concerning interactions between Ward and the victim, including an incident on October 23 where Ward allegedly pushed and slapped the child.

Daycare Worker Held Without Bail While Facing 14 Assault Charges

Heather Lynn Ward appeared in Worcester County District Court on Thursday, February 22, 2024, for a bail review. She is currently being held without bond. A preliminary hearing has been scheduled for March 19, 2024, in District Court, where further legal proceedings will take place.

As the investigation continues, additional charges may be filed against Ward. The community remains shocked and concerned about the safety and well-being of children in daycare facilities. Authorities are urging parents to thoroughly research and vet childcare providers to ensure the safety of their children.

Seeking Justice and Accountability for Victims of Daycare Abuse

In our pursuit of understanding the legal options available to families affected by daycare abuse, we had the privilege of speaking with Attorney Aaron Blank, Esq., a seasoned daycare abuse lawyer based in Maryland. With his experience in handling civil cases related to daycare abuse, Attorney Blank sheds light on the steps families can take to seek justice for their children. Join us as we look closer into the legal options and insights offered by Attorney Blank, providing hope and guidance to those navigating the difficult journey of daycare abuse litigation.

Attorney Laurence Banville (LB): Thank you for joining us, Aaron. Given your experience in handling daycare abuse cases, what would be the first steps for a family whose child has been a victim of abuse at a daycare facility?

Attorney Aaron Blank (AB): Thank you for having me, Laurence. In such cases, it is crucial for the family to ensure the immediate safety and well-being of the child. Once the child is out of harm’s way, the next step would be to gather as much evidence as possible, including any documentation, photographs, or videos that could support the claim of abuse. It’s essential to report the incident to the authorities and seek medical attention for the child.

LB: Once the immediate concerns are addressed, what legal avenues are available to the families seeking justice for their child’s abuse at a daycare facility?

AB: Families may have grounds to pursue a civil case against the liable parties, including the daycare facility, its owners, staff members, or any other individuals involved in the abuse. A civil lawsuit can help obtain financial compensation for the child’s physical and emotional injuries, medical expenses, therapy costs, and other damages resulting from the abuse.

LB: What factors are typically considered when determining liability in daycare abuse cases?

AB: Liability in daycare abuse cases can be complex and may involve various factors. The daycare facility and its staff have a duty of care towards the children they are responsible for. Negligence, inadequate supervision, failure to properly screen and train employees, or a lack of security measures can all contribute to a finding of liability. Additionally, if the daycare facility had previous knowledge or warning signs of potential abuse and failed to take appropriate action, it may further strengthen the case against them.

LB: What advice would you give to families who are considering filing a civil case against a daycare facility?

AB: It is crucial for families to consult with an experienced daycare abuse attorney who can guide them through the legal process. They should choose an attorney who specializes in these types of cases and has a track record of success. The attorney can help gather evidence, navigate complex legal procedures, and advocate for the best interests of the child and their family. It’s essential to act promptly, as there are statutes of limitations that impose time limits on filing a lawsuit.

LB: Thank you, Aaron, for sharing your insights and advice on this important topic. Families who have experienced daycare abuse need to know that they have legal options available to seek justice and hold accountable those responsible for their child’s suffering.

Has Your Child Been Abused at a MD Daycare? Contact Us for a Free Consultation

If you or a loved one has experienced daycare abuse and are seeking justice, don’t hesitate to reach out to us for a free consultation. With Attorney Aaron Blank, Esq., and our dedicated team of attorneys by your side, we are committed to providing compassionate support and fighting tirelessly for the rights of victims and their families. Together, let us navigate the legal process, hold the responsible parties accountable, and work towards the justice and compensation you deserve. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation and take the first step towards reclaiming your child’s well-being and seeking the justice you seek.

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