INDIANAPOLIS – A 1-year-old Indianapolis boy was apparently attacked at a day care center, leaving his lips, eyes and face horribly swollen and sparking a police investigation.
The boy's mother, Tiffany Griffin, said she was summoned to the day care Monday afternoon a few hours after dropping her two sons off there and was so outraged by her younger son Jesse's scratched and bloody face that she punched a day care worker.
Griffin told WXIN-TV that her son was hospitalized for his injuries.
Indianapolis police spokesman Officer Aaron Hamer said Tuesday that detectives are investigating, but that no arrest has been made.
The owner of the Kiddiegarden day care, Haben Ghebremichael, told The Associated Press that a 2-year-old girl had attacked Griffin's son and that girl had blood on her hands afterwards. While it's not uncommon for that girl to act out, she said Tuesday that, "the extent of the injuries just blows our minds."
Ghebremichael said a worker at the day care separated the two children during Monday's attack but the boy had already been injured by that time. She said her business began receiving harassing phone calls following news reports of the boy's injury and was closed Tuesday. She said she wasn't sure when it will reopen.
Ghebremichael said in a prepared statement that her business has never faced any allegations of abuse or maltreatment and it is cooperating fully with police, child protective services and state agencies. "This was truly a sad, shocking and unfortunate event," she said in an emailed statement. "Our hearts go out to Jesse and his family and are praying for his well-being."
Kiddiegarden is a licensed day care and was last inspected in October 2017, WXIN-TV reported.
Griffin said she doesn't believe the 2-year-old girl attacked her son, saying that child "was small and she didn't look like she was the violent type."
She said that when she showed a photo of her son's swollen face to the girl's mother, that woman "started crying and said her baby wouldn't do anything like that."
Griffin said she isn't sure if she can ever leave her children in someone else's care again.
"I couldn't protect him and I was trying to do what's best for my kids like going to the doctor, taking care of my health and going to school," she said.
This version of the story corrects the name of the day car to Kiddiegarden, one word.