SPARKS, NV - The owner of a Sparks Day Care Center has been charged with felony child abuse after an incident captured on cell phone video shot by a child in her care.
The investigation began with an email sent to Washoe County Social Services.
It came from a parent whose child was enrolled at the Creative Kids Day Care Center and had apparently witnessed and recorded the incident on their cell phone.
Washoe Social Services' Alice LeDesma says it's unusual to have video as evidence and in this case, it's damning.
"It's pretty clear that she was handling the child roughly," says LeDesma, "She pulls and yanks on him and grabs him. The regulations don't allow any kind of corporal punishment or physical punishment at all."
Phillips is accused of hitting a 3-year-old boy in the back of the head twice and swatting his face. Police say in court documents in Sparks Justice Court she also is seen grabbing him by the hair and pulling his head back while yelling at him.
The parents of the boy shown in the video were apparently unaware of the incident until contacted by Social Services.
Once they were notified, Sparks Police were called in and Monday, 53 year old Carla Bea Phillips was arrested on one count of felony child abuse. She's since been released on $20-thousand dollars bail.
The Day Care Center remained in operation today, but Phillips is allowed no where near this or any other licensed day care facility.
"Her work permit card which is her background check her clearance issued through the Washoe County Sheriff's office has been suspended with intent to revoke."
Remaining employees at the day care center had no comment. A member of the Lutheran Church next door said she'd have to see the video to believe it. "I can't imagine her hitting a child."
In fact, LeDesma says says Phillips has operated Creative Kids since 1998 and has no serious violations on her record.
"We haven't had any problems. Whenever there's been infractions or violations, she's complied and fixed them, but not general quality of care issues."
LeDesma says she's received no calls from other parents or any indication there are other potential victims.