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Parents Demand Answers from East Texas Daycare After Toddlers Found Outside of Bank

Two families represented by The Button Law Firm are suing Building Blocks Childcare Center and its owner for negligence and breaking Texas daycare laws

SEVEN POINTS, Texas, May 13, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — The parents of two of the three East Texas children found outside a bank are seeking the truth from Building Blocks Childcare Center and its owner Steven Stearman. The toddlers, whose ages range from 17 months to 20 months, were found outside the building by a good Samaritan waiting in the bank’s drive-thru. Parents Stephanie Morgan and Justin Brannon are suing the daycare center and Stearman, claiming the center failed to follow state laws regarding proper supervision and maintaining a safe environment which allowed the children to exit the premises unnoticed in December 2023.

The complaint also alleges that the three toddlers showed other signs of further neglect: They all had smelly diapers that were soaked through; had painful spurweed grass stickers stuck to their shirts, arms, and legs; and none were wearing shoes or pants despite the cold temperatures outside.

The Samaritan summoned a bank teller who helped her gather the children and take them to Building Blocks Childcare Center, located next to the bank. According to the suit, a daycare employee did claim the children. A second employee acknowledged the children were from the center, but went back into the building, leaving the children with the good Samaritan and bank teller, who then contacted local police for assistance. The lawsuit continues that Stearman chose not to notify any of the neglected children’s parents following the incident, and when he did explain to them what happened, he gave each set of parents a different story—all versions were revealed to be lies based on surveillance footage obtained from the nearby bank’s security cameras.

“My heart was broken upon learning how little Building Blocks Childcare Center actually cared for my child, and further disrespected us by lying,” says Stephanie Morgan, one of the parents suing Building Blocks Childcare Center and its owner. “We selected this daycare center based on its claims of providing a nurturing environment and superior childcare, which were clearly lies as well. I cannot thank the good Samaritan and bank teller enough for saving my baby.”

An investigation found the three children were in a class of only six children, yet they were still able to exit the center unnoticed for an extended period of time, according to the complaint. Following the incident, Building Blocks Childcare Center was cited by the Texas Health and Human Services Commission Child-Care Licensing Division and the Texas Department of Family and Protected Services for violating several childcare laws. These violations included having an absent daycare director, not promptly changing diapers, neglecting children, not reporting an incident that placed children at risk, leaving the infant children unsupervised, and using the infant classroom as a pass-through room for the facility with an unmonitored exterior door. State records showed Building Blocks Childcare Center had seven other citations over the course of two-and-a-half years per the suit.

“The multiple red flags in this daycare negligence case are shocking,” says daycare injury attorney Russell Button of The Button Law Firm, who represents both families in this case. “Half of a toddler classroom disappeared and no one at Building Blocks Childcare Center even knew these young children were gone. Our focus in this lawsuit is to hold the center and Mr. Stearman accountable for completely ignoring several childcare laws that unnecessarily endangered the health and safety of innocent babies.”

The case is Stephanie Morgan, Individually and as next friends of M.O., a minor child; Justin Brannon, Individually and as next friend of S.B., a minor child, vs. Building Blocks Childcare Center Inc.; and Steven Stearman, Cause No. CV24-0249-3 in the District Court of Henderson County, Texas. A copy of the complaint can be accessed here.

About the Button Law Firm
The Button Law Firm (buttonlawfirm.com) is a Texas-based personal injury law firm that advocates for children and their families in meaningful litigation to make local communities safer. The firm focuses on daycare and child-related injuries such as abuse and neglect cases, bottle warmer burns, traumatic brain injuries, and catastrophic injuries. With attorneys in Dallas, Houston, and Midland, The Button Law Firm helps families move forward across the Lone Star State.

SOURCE The Button Law Firm

Originally published at https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/parents-demand-answers-from-east-texas-daycare-after-toddlers-found-outside-of-bank-302143662.html
Images courtesy of https://pixabay.com

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