by: Kerry Kavanaugh Updated:
LILBURN, Ga. - Lilburn police said a woman who left 10 young children home alone was running an unlicensed day care.
Melissa Brown, 23, has denied taking any money for her child care services.
Channel 2's Kerry Kavanaugh found a sign near the home advertising for child care services, took a picture of it and sent it to police.
Investigators said the photo, along with what they found
inside, leads them to believe Brown had a full-fledged day care operating under the radar.
"Do you want to give your side of the story about why the 10 kids were here by themselves?" Kavanaugh asked Brown after knocking on her front door.
"That's not the story, but no comment. Thank you," Brown answered.
Lilburn police said Brown went to pick up a U-Haul truck Thursday, leaving the children alone with no supervision. They oldest was 10, the youngest just eight months.
Police responded to a call from a concerned woman saying she came to the home on Arrowind Road to pick something up and heard kids crying and screaming inside.
According to the police report, the officer found 10 children crying and huddled together on a bed and a maze of dangerous conditions.
"They did find an open bathroom door. The tub was three quarters full of water," said Cpt. Thomas Bardugon of the Lilburn Police Department.
The officer noted faulty child locks on cabinets containing cleaning chemicals, trash lying on the floor, plus a
second-floor window open without a screen.
"We believe that it is being operated as a day care facility," Bardugon said.
Brown denied receiving any payment for her child care services telling police, "No, I just watch
Kavanaugh said the sign near the entrance to Brown's street advertised child care services for $100 a week along with Brown's home phone number.
Investigators determined some of the children in the home Thursday were Brown's. Some belonged to another mother, Tusharia McKoy.
Police said McKoy drove Brown to pick up
the U-Haul. They are both charged with second-degree child cruelty.
The State Department of
Early Care and Learning said Brown is not a licensed provider, and they too are launching an investigation.