Orlando daycare owner apologizes in child's death
ORLANDO, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) - The owner of a Florida day care center where a 3-year-old boy was found dead after being left in a van all day apologized to the child's family.
Audrey Thornton said Wednesday at a news conference at her attorney's office that she was extremely sorry about the death of Myles Hill.
“I’m so sorry,” Thornton said. "I loved Myles. I took care of him since he was a baby.”
Miles was found dead Monday night and police say he had been inside the van for nearly 12 hours.
More than 100 people gathered Tuesday night to remember Hill, who would have turned 4 on Aug. 22. During a candlelight service, Chiel Banks remembered her son as a happy child, adding she called him "my baby genius, 'cause he knew everything."
Orlando police Chief John Mina said Myles was supposed to have been dropped off Monday morning at another day care center, but instead he was taken to the location where his body was later found. The driver admitted to "not doing a head count."
The Florida Department of Children and Families on Wednesday said they have filed an emergency suspension order to shut down both Little Miracles Academy Orlando-area locations. The agency ordered no child be present or cared for at either facility, until and unless DCF determines it is safe for them to return.
"Our hearts are broken about the senseless loss of Myles and we will continue to support his family. We are conducting a thorough investigation and are assisting law enforcement with their criminal investigation," read a statement issued by DCF Secretary Mike Carroll. "This facility was previously cited for not keeping proper paperwork, based on the tragic circumstances of this case, both facilities have now been shut down. We will continue to aggressively act to keep kids safe and will hold anyone accountable who doesn’t follow the law."
The daycare’s location near Orange Blossom Trail was the site of the tragedy on Monday.