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Daycare Workers Arrested for Frightening Kids with Mask from ‘Scream’

Videos of the disturbing incident went viral, prompting the arrests.

A Mississippi daycare is under investigation after upsetting videos of childcare workers allegedly scaring toddlers with a mask from the movie Scream have gone viral.

The suspects — Sierra McCandless, 21; Oci-Anna Kilburn, 28; Jennifer Newman, 25; and Shyenne Mills, 28 — have each been charged with three counts of felony child abuse, while Traci Hutson, 44; has been charged with failure to report abuse by mandatory reporter and simple assault, the Monroe County Sheriff’s Department announced.

The five suspects were arrested Thursday in connection to three viral videos of the workers seemingly using the mask to frighten a group of little kids left in their care at the Lil’ Blessings Child Care & Learning Center in Hamilton, Miss.

“Are you being bad? Do I need to take you outside?” one daycare worker is heard screaming in a toddler’s face, while wearing the mask. “You better be good,” she says, before making her way into another room of toddlers.

An additional video shows what appears to be another worker donning the mask and scaring kids while they attempt to eat lunch.

Cries and screams of multiple children can be heard on the videos, which were allegedly filmed in September and October of this year, per the Associated Press.

Daycare owner Sheila Sanders told the Monroe Journal that she was unaware of the unsettling videos until Wednesday afternoon of this week.

“The people that did those acts are no longer with us. They were fired. I wasn’t here at the time and wasn’t aware they were doing that. I don’t condone that and never have. I just want to say it’s been taken care of,” Sanders told the newspaper.

According to the sheriff’s office, bond amounts for McCandless and Kilburn were set at $20,000, while the bonds of Newman and Mills are $15,000. Hutson’s bond amount was not released.

“As a dad and as someone who has great compassion for those who can’t defend themselves, I admit it was very hard to watch these videos today; and my initial reaction was the same as most anyone else I would think…’they deserve to be charged,'” Sheriff Kevin Crook said in a statement on October 6, after the video had been posted.

But, he noted, “Our Investigators do not bring charges based solely on our watching of a video, and we don’t encourage others to run down to Justice Court and start filing away. We need time to dig into a situation and find out what the real facts of the case are… all of them.”

“It made me sick at my stomach to think of the terror those kids were enduring. It still does,” he added.


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