DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. — The mother of a 3-year-old boy who was the victim of apparent child abuse at a DeKalb County day care was told that his injuries were mosquito bites, according to the incident report.
Three day care teachers from the Apple Tree Learning Center & Academy were arrested last week after the day care was abruptly shut down due to reports of abuse last month.
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Cherretta Hull, Alexis Swain and Cassandra Chambers were all arrested on child cruelty charges.
Police said they responded to reports of abuse at the day care on East Ponce De Leon Ave. at 6 p.m. on June 22.
Police spoke to the mother, Kourtney Cheng, who said she left her child at the day care at 9 a.m., and when she came back to pick him up at 5 p.m., she noticed that her son had injuries to the right side of his face. Officers said the child’s injuries were visible when they got to the scene.
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Cheng talked to an employee at the day care who told her the injuries were mosquito bites.
Cheng, who is a registered nurse, said the injuries were not mosquito bites and asked to speak to Chambers, the day care’s director.
Cheng said she was concerned that the abuse was recurring because her son had told her that he was “popped in the head” by a teacher.
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Cheng asked to speak to the owner, and an investigation was completed, but Cheng told police she didn’t think it was handled properly. Cheng allowed her children to go back to day care.
She told police she was worried the injuries her child received on June 22 were in retaliation for telling her a teacher hit him.
The three teachers, including Chambers, were arrested after an investigation,
Swain and Hull were charged with first-degree cruelty to children. Chambers was charged with failure to report suspected child abuse.
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