PENSACOLA, Fla. (WKRG) — A worker at a Pensacola daycare has been arrested for alleged child abuse charges after being caught on surveillance video, according to the Pensacola Police Department.
Antonina McKinney, 61, was charged with two counts of child abuse.
On Dec. 13, officers responded to a daycare in Pensacola in reference to a child abuse complaint. Upon arrival, officers were shown a surveillance video from the daycare. According to the arrest report, the video showed McKinney, who was acting as the caretaker for the children, walking through the room attempting to get the children to go to sleep on different cots. According to the arrest report, McKinney appeared to be agitated as she moved through the room, occasionally putting her hands on the children and forcing them toward their beds.
According to the arrest report, a child was laying beside his cot then saw McKinney was coming towards him and quickly got into the cot, acting as if he was afraid of her. McKinney then picked up the cot, dragged it a few feet and then dropped it suddenly to the floor from about knee height, causing the child’s head to fall with it. The arrest report said the child started crying but remained in his cot. Later on, McKinney approached another child and hit her on her rear end.
According to the arrest report, the child did not seem unruly. McKinney then walked up to another child’s cot, according to the arrest report, and picked up and dropped the cot from knee height again. The child got off his cot and began to lie near the base of the cot. According to the arrest report, McKinney then grabbed the child “forcibly” underneath the armpits, then dropped him onto the cot, where his head and the back of his neck made contact with the metal frame of the cot as he fell.
Officers said staff showed McKinney the footage and asked why she did what she did, but McKinney showed no remorse for her actions.
Officers then spoke with the assistant manager of the daycare, who said she had been working as the primary teacher that day in the room with McKinney. She said there is a one-hour period where McKinney watches the classroom while she takes a break and that is when the incidents occurred. The assistant manager said there was one instance where a child told her McKinney pinched her. The woman said she was “alarmed” and notified other staff members, who watched the footage and immediately contacted the victim’s father to return to the daycare. According to the arrest report, police were called to respond.
The father of the victim who was pinched said he did not see any visible injuries but believed McKinney’s actions were inappropriate.
After watching the footage, the officer said it was clear McKinney was agitated and was taking her aggression out on the children.
“Her actions did not have any intended purpose besides inflicting potential physical harm or mental harm by harassing the children needlessly,” The officer said in the arrest report.
McKinney was booked into the Escambia County Jail on a $20,000 bond.