Bardstown daycare under fire after worker charged with abusing 2-year-old

A Nelson County daycare worker captured on video physically abusing and spraying a liquid in a toddler’s face at a daycare center has been charged with child abuse.

Heather Jent, 35, was arrested Tuesday in connection with the April 26 incident at Little Angel’s Primary House in Bardstown following a complaint from the foster parent of the 2-year-old boy reportedly seen in the video, news outlets said.

A police warrant obtained by WAVE-TV alleged Jent grabbed the toddler by the arm and dragged him across the floor, and caused the boy to fall on his face in gravel after taking the toddler off a ride.

The center is owned by former Bardstown Mayor John Royalty, who told news outlets that Jent was fired and that the liquid in the bottle was water.

Records obtained by news outlets show that Little Angel’s Primary House has been investigated by the Cabinet of Health and Family Services several times on allegations it did not have complete immunization records for children in its care and that it kept some rooms below 65 degrees, as well as a complaint of improper punishments.

Jent was booked into the Nelson County Detention Center on a fourth-degree assault charge (child abuse). It was unclear whether she had an attorney who could comment for her.

Bardstown police are conducting the investigation and said additional charges are possible.

By Ken Howlett, News Director and the Associated Press