A Texas day care owner was arrested Saturday after police searched her home Friday and found several of her charges bound by the neck and strapped into car seats.
Investigators also said in an arrest affidavit that Rebecca Anderson, 60, of Mesquite, drugged the children to keep them quiet, NBC 5 in Dallas-Fort Worth reported.
Anderson, who owns Becky’s Home Child Care, is charged with nine counts of endangering a child through criminal neglect -- one count for each child in her home Friday -- and one count of injury to a child, Dallas County Jail records show. She is being held in lieu of $45,000 bail.
The affidavit obtained by NBC 5 said that Anderson came under suspicion Thursday after the father of a 6-month-old boy she cared for reviewed footage from a small video camera mounted on the baby’s car seat. The footage showed Anderson yanking the infant from the car seat by his ankle and picking him up off the ground by the bib tied around his neck, investigators said.
The recording also showed Anderson feeding the boy an “unknown substance using a plastic liquid syringe,” the affidavit said.
The man brought the video to Mesquite police officials, who obtained a search warrant for Anderson’s home, the news station reported. When the search warrant was executed Friday, Anderson claimed that she had just five children in her care at the time.
Officers searching the home found another four children, three of them strapped into plastic car seats in a dark closet in the master bedroom and the fourth child restrained in the master bathroom, NBC 5 reported.
“Shoelace-like ligatures” were found tied around the children’s necks, the arrest affidavit said. Some of the ligatures had to be cut to free the children.
Anderson admitted to officers that she used the ligatures to limit the children’s movements and sometimes kept them strapped into car seats for as long as seven hours at a time, the document said, according to the news station. She also admitted she “had likely given Tylenol to all of the children,” investigators said.
Neighbors told ABC 13 in Houston that they sometimes heard children screaming from Anderson’s home.
“It just kind of concerned me, the way the kids sounded when the parents dropped them off, where it alarmed me,” one neighbor told the news station.
Becky’s Home Child Care could not be found among the database of licensed day care centers approved by the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services.
A Google search for her facility shows it as permanently closed.