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Child from Texas day care said owner sexually abused her

The co-owner of an East Central Texas day care center was arrested after a young girl accused him of sexual contact. The child told authorities the suspect forced her to repeat actions shown on a pornographic video at the day care.

The complaint alleges the sexual abuse occurred in College Station between 2008 and 2010. Reports said the girl was 8-years-old when the alleged offenses took place. The child’s present age was not reported.

The 50-year-old suspect co-owns the day care facility with his wife. The center was in operation as A Place For Me since 2010. The day care was shut down in April when Brazos County sheriff’s deputies began conducting the sexual abuse investigation.

The child alleged the suspect ordered the girl to repeat "on his private" the actions shown in the "inappropriate" video. Authorities said the child performed the acts out of fear because the owner was "scary."

The suspect denied he shared pornography with the girl. He claimed he had not worked at the facility for about three years.

The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services investigated more than 1,800 child abuse complaints at day care centers last year. DFPS also performs safety inspections. A Place For Me had eight documented deficiencies on record, none of which was serious or connected to the girl’s allegations.

Prosecutors said investigating cases like this one is challenging due to the length of time between the reported offense and notification of authorities. Officials urged parents to vet day care centers thoroughly. Spontaneous visits to facilities and open child communication were encouraged.

The suspect is currently free on bail. If convicted of indecency with a child, the defendant may be fined as much as $10,000 and imprisoned from two to 20 years. A civil claim may also be filed which could require the man to compensate the child and her family for harm.

Source: theeagle.com, "College Station day care owner facing sexual assault charges" Andrea Salazar, Jun. 08, 2013

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