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Indianapolis Day Care Provider Charged with Neglect

Steve Wagner

Stephanie Gribble, an Indianapolis in-home daycare provider, pleaded guilty to six felony counts of the neglect of a dependent. Gribble has been operating an in-home daycare for at least the past eight years, and has been written up for violations numerous times, but never shut down.

Gribble was charged two weeks ago because four children in her care had to be hospitalized due to being drugged while in her care. According to some of the children, she always gave them “grape medicine” to help them rest at nap time. Other speculations have been made that she was giving Risperidone to some of the children, after she gave conflicting reports of why the prescription (supposedly for her son) was empty when she had filled it only a week previously.

The children who were hospitalized exhibited symptoms of drowsiness, drooling, uncontrollable urination, swelling, and more. Some went unconscious and had to be revived upon arrival at the hospital.

Why Gribble’s day care was even open is the biggest question parents and state officials are asking. Gribble has moved from home to home with her unlicensed facility, and has evaded government involvement. She has ignored cease and desist letters, after receiving them for caring for too many children (as many as 15 with just herself as a provider) in one space, and although she has been cooperative upon visits from state officials, she has ignored demands to change her practices.

By 2014, Gribble had received at least 13 violations for invalid care practices, but the state allowed her to remain open due to “unsubstantiated” evidence. Gribble also had DCS charges pending involving suspected abuse against her own son. The state is blaming miscommunication for the reason Gribble was allowed to remain open all these years, but parents are thankful she was finally charged and stopped from running her day care. Gribble faces up to 10 years in prison, as well as an additional ten years of probation and community service, in which time she will not be allowed to provide child care services, or even have contact with children other than her own.

Since 2009, 18 children have died in the care of unlicensed day care facilities. The state says that it can only do so much when it comes to the monitoring and control of individual day cares, and that the responsibility falls on parents to research and investigate any facility in which they are interested in having their children attend. Attorney General Greg Zoeller is demanding efforts to tighten up regulations, however, and is pushing for new legislation regarding day care practices and how the state can be involved in protecting children.

In the meantime, you can read the full article from the Indianapolis Star for more information on the charges against Gribble, as well as information for how to contact state services for information on individual day care centers.

If your child has already suffered an injury from a child care provider, the daycare negligence attorneys at Wagner Reese can assist you in receiving the compensation you are owed. Call us today at (888) 204-8440 to schedule a free consultation with our child injury attorneys.

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