Caregiver at Child Development Center Charged with Misdemeanor Assault
ALEXANDRIA, Va. – Va Nessa Taylor, 47, of Temple Hills, Md., was charged today by criminal complaint for allegedly engaging in misdemeanor assaults while working as a caregiver at the Cody Child Development Center (CDC) on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall (JBM-HH) in Arlington, Va.
Dana J. Boente, Acting United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, and Col. Fern O. Sumpter, Joint Base Commander at JBM-HH, made the announcement.
Taylor has been charged with committing the offense of simple assault against a child under 16 years of age at a facility located within the special maritime and territorial jurisdiction of the United States. The offense is a Class A misdemeanor under federal law, and if convicted, Taylor faces a maximum penalty of one year in prison and a $100,000 fine.
According to court records, Taylor worked at the CDC as a caregiver. On Jan. 29, 2014, a CDC employee reported to a supervisor that Taylor had been observed withholding food from a two-year-old child during the facility’s lunch period. After this conduct was reported, officials investigated the allegations and conducted a thorough review of surveillance footage within the CDC. That investigation ultimately revealed four instances in which Taylor allegedly assaulted four children within her care by hitting and pushing the children. The children ranged in ages from 18 months to two years, and the observed conduct occurred from Nov. 26, 2013 to Jan. 29, 2014.
Based on the investigation, Taylor’s conduct did not appear to result in sustained physical injury to the children. Taylor was removed from her duties of supervising children on Jan. 30, 2014, immediately after her conduct was reported to the relevant authorities at JBM-HH.
This case was investigated by the U.S. Army’s Criminal Investigation Command (CID) at JBM-HH. Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Amanda O’Neil and Assistant U.S. Attorney Rosanne C. Haney are prosecuting the case on behalf of the United States.
The Cody Child Development Center, which cares for infants and school-age children, is the largest in the Department of Defense and serves military and civilian families who work at the Pentagon, Forts Myer-Henderson and McNair and throughout the national capital region.
Criminal complaints are only charges and not evidence of guilt. A defendant is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty.A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information may be found on PACER and on the website of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia.