DSS finishes Jasper Co. daycare investigation - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

DSS finishes Jasper Co. daycare investigation

JASPER CO., SC (WTOC) -

South Carolina's Department of Social Services started investigating Touched by an Angel Daycare last month after Mackenzie Wright's parents said she came home from the daycare with bruises on her face.

The director of the daycare, Angela Peeples, said a toy fell on Mackenzie's face.

DSS finished its investigation on July 17 and sent the results of its investigation to the Jasper County Sheriff's Office, Peeples and Mackenzie's parents.

In a letter to Peeples from DSS, the agency said, "DSS has determined that you are the person responsible for the harm or substantial risk of harm to the child involved. As provided by state law, your name as the responsible party has been entered into the state central registry of child abuse and neglect."

WTOC went to the daycare Monday to talk to Peeples about the report, but she said she didn't want to talk and shut the door.

While Peeples did not want to talk about the report, Mackenzie's parents did.

"We still get angry about it. We would really like to find out the truth," father Michael Wright said.

"That'll probably never happen," mother Sharena Wright said.

Peeples originally told them two children were trying to grab a toy from a ledge, and it fell on Mackenzie's face. Peeples told WTOC the same thing when asked about the incident, and she even had a daycare employee tell that story too.

However, a few days later that employee admitted that she lied.

"I wasn't there…so I don't really know what happened to the baby," she said.

According to a statement from Peeples in the four page report from DSS, she said the toy didn't fall from a ledge.

The report said, "Mrs. Peeples stated that an 11-month-old had a sesame street toy, threw it and it hit Mackenzie in the face...who was sitting in the swing."

The DSS report also said the daycare has been cited by child care licensing for "lack of supervision."

WTOC asked the Wright family if they looked into any of this before they sent their children to the daycare, and they said Peeples sold herself well and even talked to another parent.

"She said she sent her kids there and she never had any problem," Sharena Wright said.

They said they've now learned their lesson, and they'll never let this happen to their child again.

"We're going to take our time looking the next time we go to another daycare," Michael Wright said.

The Jasper County Sheriff's Office is still investigating, so they declined an interview at this time.

The sheriff's office does have the report from DSS, and the sheriff said he hopes to wrap things up very soon.

According to South Carolina state law, Peeples could lose her license because of neglect, but she would have up to 30 days to appeal if DSS decides to pull her daycare license.

Copyright 2014 WTOC. All rights reserved.

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