When a Chicago dad picked up his one-year-old daughter from daycare, he panicked after seeing the daycare was closed. He immediately dialed 911 as he heard his little one crying behind the locked door.
Leaving a toddler in a daycare center can be concerning for many parents, as most of the time it is the first time they have left their child alone. Parents always look for trusted people as guardians.
Good reviews and personal recommendations help people decide which daycare is reliable. In some cases, things can go wrong even after a parent chooses a daycare center after months of research. The man in today’s story experienced something similar.
Day and Cornelius Jones. | Source: youtube.com/ABCNews
THE SHOCKING SURPRISE
Like every other day, Cornelius Jones headed to his daughter’s daycare at night to pick her up. He had planned to arrive there 15 minutes before closing time and take Journee home but did not know what awaited him at his destination.
After reaching the hour, Jones was shocked to see the main door locked. The lights were off and it looked like the staff members had left the daycare. He rang and knocked on the door, but no one opened it. He even called the daycare but received no response.
Jones panicked and called 911 because he could hear Journee crying behind the locked door. He had no way of getting into the daycare until the firefighters arrived. Her heart skipped a beat after hearing her one-year-old daughter cry.
Cornelius Jones. | Source: youtube.com/ABCNews
WAITING FOR HELP
The unfortunate incident happened in 2015 at Chicago’s “All Things Are Possible For Kids” daycare center. Waiting for the firefighters to arrive seemed to be the longest few minutes of Jones’ life. He said:
“I was terrified and also hurt because I knew she was in there in the dark and I couldn’t reach her.”
Jones felt relieved to see the firefighters arrive at the daycare, but he still had some time to go before he could see his daughter. As firefighters did their best to open the locked door, Jones pulled out his phone and recorded a video of the entire process.
Firefighters. | Source: youtube.com/ABCNews
THE CLOSED DOOR
Luckily, they broke down the door and burst inside the dark daycare. Everyone could hear Journee crying, but no one could see her. Jones recalled:
“And one of the policemen flashed a light to the left and sent it back to the right, and that’s when I saw her crawling towards us screaming, and my heart sank.”
Journee was scared in the dark after daycare authorities locked her in there. The little girl couldn’t stop crying even after her father hugged her. Jones said “his heart sank”, but he was happy Journee was unharmed.
Quanesha Borum and Journee. | Source: Inside Edition
Journee’s mother, Quanesha Borum, arrived at the daycare just after firefighters broke the lock. She was furious after seeing her frightened daughter and demanded answers right away.
According to Borum, the director of the daycare informed her that an employee had put Journee to sleep, and later she told the director that all the children had left. Borum expressed:
“But my thing is I come here and sign her in and out, so why wasn’t the list checked before everyone left?”
SHE WAS A DOLL
According to Jones, employees said the daycare was not empty and they were present at the back of the building. On the other hand, Borum revealed what the nursery manager said while apologizing to her:
“And she told me they thought Journee was a doll, but she’s not that small to be a doll, so that’s an apology.”
Borum thought the daycare should be closed because the staff put the children at risk. She was surprised no one had seen the checklist before turning off the lights and locking the door.
Although Journee was safely rescued and doing well at home, her parents decided not to send her to daycare. The unfortunate incident had shattered their confidence. They said they couldn’t rely on child care to care for their daughter.
What would you do if your child was locked in the dark? Do you think daycare workers should take responsibility?
Click here to read another story about a little boy who said his teachers taped his mouth and threw away his lunch when he was starving all day.