A 23-year-old woman was arrested Saturday after videos that circulated online appeared to depict her abusing children at a Maryland day-care center, according to The Washington Post.
Kayla Greenwell, of Oxon Hill, Md., had worked at the Oxon Hill Center for Early Learning since March, police said in a news release, and is being held by the Department of Corrections. She was charged with multiple counts of child abuse and assault.
Prince George’s County police launched an investigation Friday afternoon after a local news station, Fox5 News, received multiple videos showing Greenwell mistreating children at the day-care center. The videos — which the news station says it waited to broadcast until after turning them over to police — quickly gained social media attention.
“This is why ppl are hesitant on sending their children to daycares,” someone tweeted in reaction to the videos. “It’s bad enough you have to pay a mortgage for daycare these days. But paying to have your kids mistreated…” The user added an anger emoji.
Parents of children who attend the day-care center could not immediately be reached for comment.
In one video, Greenwell is shown kicking a small girl in a pink tank top. Then she grabs the girl by her right arm and tosses her onto a purple-sheeted mattress — the kind used for nap time — before punting the mattress so hard that the girl topples off.
In another video, she grabs the same girl by the front of her shirt and throws her onto the mattress. In the background, children sleep on mattresses in rows, surrounded by yellow plastic chairs and a green chalkboard that’s been wiped clean.
Police said Greenwell recorded the videos on her cellphone on Wednesday.
The Oxon Hill Center for Early Learning provides services to children ages 6 weeks to 5 years, according to its website, along with before- and after-school care for elementary-age children.
Part of an “About Us” entry on the website states: “We do not take lightly the trust parents have in us to care for their children.”