Yamirka Menendez: Florida day care worker, 51, caught abusing toddler on camera

Footage at Time of Wonder Academy in Tampa captured the day care worker slapping a second victim, a 4-month-old baby after dropping a 1-year-old


                            Yamirka Menendez: Florida day care worker, 51, caught abusing toddler on camera
Yamirka Menendez, 51, is charged with child abuse after a disturbing surveillance video showed her manhandling a 1-year-old and dropping him (HCSO)
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TAMPA, FLORIDA: Florida day care worker, 51-year-old Yamirka Menendez has been charged with child abuse after a disturbing surveillance video showed her manhandling a 1-year-old and dropping him. Menendez is accused of grabbing the toddler by his wrists and swinging him three feet into the air before dropping him on the floor. The toddler suffered from a fractured leg as a result.

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The said incident took place in the Time of Wonder Academy in Tampa on September 8, Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office reported. Menendez is also charged with "forcibly" grabbing a 4-month-old and slapping the baby several times. Apart from Menendez, another staffer, 52-year-old Milagros Rodriguez was charged with failing to report child abuse. "A daycare teacher is facing child abuse charges after hitting & dropping a 1-year-old, causing serious injuries to the child, and another is facing a charge for failing to report that abuse," HCSO said in a statement. 

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In the footage, Menendez is seen taking a boy from a mechanical swing, then swinging the child by the wrists before dropping him onto the floor. As a result, he was not able to stand or place any weight on his left foot. Later in the day, Menendez hit the same child in the head. The footage captured her slapping a second victim, a 4-month-old baby an hour later. The mother of the 1-year-old victim noticed her son's pain in his left foot the following day and took him to St Joseph’s Hospital, where he was diagnosed with fractures to his tibia and fibula, the sheriff's office reported. The toddler was re-examined by the University of South Florida Child Protection Team on September 23 which determined he was a victim of physical abuse.

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The two women were charged on Tuesday, September 28 after detectives reviewed the video. Neither of the women was reported to have a criminal history. Hillsborough detectives were working with daycare officials to review the video recordings.