- A lawsuit has been filed against the day care, its owners and administrative staff
- The baby was allegedly left her face down on the floor for 35 minutes
- The family is asking for actual, compensatory and punitive damages following the incident
The family of a 9-week-old baby who died at an Oxford, Mississippi day care in November has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the facility, its owners and administrative staff.
Mother Goose day care owners Mike and Alicia Valle, executive director Renee Hoover, assistant executive director Susan McCollum, employee Amy Rogers and 10 John Does were alleged to have “caused or contributed to the death” of the baby, WMC-TV reported, citing the lawsuit filed in the Lafayette County Circuit Court on May 14.
Rogers swaddled the infant and left her face down on the floor for 35 minutes, the suit claimed. She was arrested and charged with manslaughter in December, according to a previous report by WCBI.
Video footage of the incident obtained by the Oxford Police Department and the state’s Department of Health reportedly showed the baby kicking her legs up and down within the tight swaddle but unable to roll over or lift her head, the document indicated.
According to the lawsuit, the baby struggled for 18 minutes before it lost consciousness. It claimed Rogers was talking to other staff over a half-wall in the next room and playing on her phone before she found the baby unconscious with a bloody face from hemorrhaging.
Rogers held the baby in her arms and met with other staff members in the hallway, where one of the workers started CPR on the infant and another called 911 to report of a 3-month-old baby bleeding but could not determine from where, as per the suit.
A doctor who was picking up their child at the time of the incident began performing CPR on the baby and said the infant needed immediate intubation, according to the document.
Paramedics arrived 10 minutes later and attempted to revive the baby for 20 minutes. The responders reportedly said they recognized the infant had suffered cardiac arrest before their arrival.
Upon arriving at the emergency room, the suit claimed the baby’s skin was cool to the touch and she had no pulse. The infant was then flown to Le Bonheur a few hours later, but she was still unresponsive and placed on a ventilator.
According to the lawsuit, doctors determined the following day the infant suffered an anoxic brain injury due to oxygen deprivation and said the child would not be able to recover. The baby died later in the afternoon.
This was not the first time the day care received a complaint about Rogers’ classroom, the lawsuit claimed. A family allegedly withdrew their 3-month-old son in January 2019 after reportedly witnessing her “inattentiveness” and “dangerous sleep practice.”
The family alerted the day care’s administrative staff and contacted Mississippi State’s Department of Health, which requested video footage from the facility but was informed that the footage was purged after 48 hours and could not be retrieved.
Mother Goose staff initially cooperated with the police investigation of the incident but is no longer doing so, the document claimed. Rogers was also reportedly allowed to continue to work after the death and was only fired after her arrest.
The day care would lose its license a few days following the incident after state health officers determined it posed a health and safety hazard to infants, the Associated Press reported.
The infant’s family is asking for actual, compensatory and punitive damages but did not specify the amount.