Former Valley daycare employee caught on surveillance assaulting child
KNXV
ABC15 has obtained a video showing a Valley daycare employee hitting a 21-month-old boy twice in the face with a broomstick.

By Megan Thompson, KNXV

PHOENIX -- (KNXV) -- ABC15 has obtained a video showing a Valley daycare employee hitting a 21-month-old boy twice in the face with a broomstick.

Since February, ABC15 has been covering the incident that happened at Brighter Angels Learning Center, a preschool and daycare near Central Avenue and Baseline Road.

The boy was struck by employee Lillie Adams. She was fired that same day, but according to court documents, she was told to not talk to anybody about what happened — including the victim's mother.

Daycare employees told the boy's mom that his facial injury happened after he tripped and fell in the classroom. However, the incident was caught on daycare surveillance footage.

Now, the mother is speaking out for the first time to ABC15.

"They don't know what kind of people are taking care of their kids," the mother said, not wanting us to reveal her identity. "I think they should literally close down."

Adams pleaded guilty to aggravated assault in October.

The daycare director, Perla Denise Sierra Duarte, was originally charged with failure to report neglect of a minor and hindering prosecution. But, that was downgraded to a single misdemeanor in Phoenix City Court. Duarte pled guilty back in July. She no longer works at Brighter Angels either.

The owner, Ruben Sandoval, was convicted last month of a misdemeanor for covering up the abuse at his daycare. He still owns and operates the facility.

With triple convictions involving three different employees, the victim's mother is confused as to why Brighter Angels is still operating and is still licensed by the Arizona Department of Health Services.

"They just lied to my face," the mother said. "I trusted them."

Not only did she trust them as a mother, she trusted them as an employee.

She was working at Brighter Angels at the time of the incident and was just down the hall when Adams hit her little boy.

In the video, you can see the 21-month-old boy crawl under a table in a room there. It appears that Adams is trying to push the boy from under the table with the bristles of the room. However, she then took the broom and forcibly hit him in the face twice.

FULL STORY: Former Valley daycare employee caught on surveillance assaulting child - KNXV

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