Mother files lawsuit after Miami Beach daycare instructor struck child

MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) - A South Florida family is taking legal action against their child’s day care after a teacher was arrested for allegedly physically abusing the child in class.

According to police, a 3-year-old attending Lincoln-Martí School was slapped by her teacher. The victim’s mother, Paola Himcapie, swiftly took her daughter out of the school and has since filed a lawsuit against the daycare. “I saw the video, and of course, she’s not going anymore to the daycare,” she said. “I feel mad. I feel sad.”

Himcapie has claimed physical and emotional abuse of her child, but she is not the only accuser.

Fifty-four-year-old Clara Luz Quintero-Gonzalez, according to Miami Beach Police, was caught by classroom surveillance cameras striking young students at Lincoln-Martí on Aug. 25. Officials said a parent said she saw Quintero-Gonzalez on the surveillance system slapping a child in the face.

Quintero-Gonzalez faced a judge in bond court Friday. “The defendant is then seen slapping the 3-year-old victim on the left side of his face,” said the judge.

That parent called police and detectives launched an investigation and reached out to Himcapie. “Then the detective asked if I wanted to press charges, and I said of course,” Himcapie said.

Himcapie spoke about the encounter after watching 10 minutes of the footage. “This teacher jumped over the other kids and hit her and slap her in her hands, like bad,” she said. “You don’t harm somebody if you want to teach them something. You don’t try to hurt them. You teach them. You talk to them.”

Since the lawsuit was filed, the school has released an audio recording addressing the ordeal. “We will reserve comment to allow our attorney to address the allegations in court,” it said in part.

School officials said they are cooperating with police, but they have yet to receive any lawsuit from the attorney.

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