A Virginia day care teacher who turned her classroom into what a prosecutor called a “baby fight club” has been convicted on more than a dozen criminal charges.
A Prince William County judge convicted 31-year-old Sarah Jordan of Woodbridge on 13 felony and misdemeanour counts, including child cruelty, and assault and battery. She was found not guilty on four counts.
Jordan was the lead teacher in a Minnieland Academy classroom of one-year-old children in Woodbridge.
Witnesses testified that Jordan intentionally tripped children; encouraged them to fight each other; and sprayed them in the face with a hose.
Jordan testified in her own defence and denied the accusations. She said she occasionally used the hose to sprinkle kids with water but never tried to hurt them.
During the trial, parents told the judge their children began acting out at home after school, court officials confirm. One young girl was told by Jordan she was ‘ugly’ and ‘looked like a rat’.
One father said his son was under Jordan’s care at Minnieland and the boy had been forced to fight other children.
“The teacher was making him the class bully made to fight,” he told reporters. “She knows what she did. Justice has prevailed.”
Three co-workers at the school testified against Jordan, saying they had witnessed her abusing the toddlers. Jordan suggested the accusations stemmed from workplace disputes with her co-workers.
She said she occasionally used the hose to sprinkle children with water because the sprinkler attachment was broken but never tried to hurt them.
But prosecutor Ashleigh Landers said the three co-workers who testified they witnessed Jordan abusing the toddlers had no bias against Jordan and one of them even considered Jordan a friend.
Landers said in her closing argument the atmosphere fostered by Jordan was “almost creating like a baby fight club” and did immeasurable damage to the psyches of impressionable children.
Jordan is being held by authorities and will be sentenced on May 6. Her lawyer, Adrian Showells, noted that Jordan still has the right to appeal but otherwise declined to comment.
One of her colleagues, Kierra Spriggs, 26, faces similar charges, and is set to go to trial next month.
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