BRADFORD COUNTY, Florida. – A Bradford County Nursery School employee heard threatening a pupil in a video is now facing a child abuse charge.
Courtney Jones was arrested on Monday.
“Stop shooting,” a child can be heard saying to Jones in a video obtained by News4JAX.
“Well, when I tell you to come in, don’t walk away from me. Boy, I’m gonna put my hand around your neck and choke you,” Jones replies.
The video was recorded by another Bradford Preschool and Learning Center employee in August, according to a warrant. The boy’s mother, Taylor Williams, said her son Zachariah was 4 at the time and she was relieved to hear of the arrest. News4JAX spoke to Williams last month after DCF temporarily suspended the daycare’s license.
AFTER: Bradford County preschool suspended by DCF after police investigation
“I think it’s amazing. I’m glad they finally see it and finally do something to help protect other kids,” Williams said.
According to the warrant, staff are accused of locking children in the side yard as punishment. A life-size monster doll was used to discipline and terrorize children. The warrant adds that older children were allowed to fight younger ones when they misbehaved.
Jones is accused of squeezing the children’s faces and threatening to staple them to their pigtails. Detectives interviewed her 11 months before her arrest. Jones told police she was talking to her own son in the video, but confirmed the allegations of fights between older and younger children.
On a DCF website, parents can check to see if their child’s childcare facility has any violations.
A search from the Bradford Preschool and Learning Center now shows ‘no data found’.
News4JAX called Jones from a comment, but she did not respond.
Records show Jones was previously charged with preschool-related child neglect in 2015, but that charge was dropped because the state said there was insufficient evidence.
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