CPS investigation unearthed additional complaints against dayhome operator found guilty of manslaughter
A fatality inquiry began on Monday into the death of a little girl who suffered blunt force injuries while at a local dayhome in 2012.
Mackenzy Woolfsmith was critically injured at a home on Elgin Heath S.E. on May 2, 2012 and died from her injuries the next day. An autopsy determined that the 21-month-old died from multiple, blunt force trauma.
During Monday's court proceedings, Justice Joshua Hawkes commended Woolfsmith's parents for participating in the fatality inquiry. the couple stating 'You've been through a terrible tragedy," Hawkes said to the parents. "You don't have to do this. It shows a level of courage, a commitment, to make things better."
Caitlin Jarosz was charged with second-degree murder in the toddler’s death and pleaded guilty to manslaughter in November of 2015. Jarosz was sentenced to five and a half years in prison and was granted day parole last December.
Detective Michael Cavilla of the Calgary Police Service told the court that three additional complaints involving Jarosz surfaced during the investigation into the toddler's death. The allegations, that have not been proven in court, included:
- A 13-month-old child who suffered a fractured wrist and bleeding lips in 2010 at a licensed dayhome where Jarosz worked
- A child who suffered bruising under their tongue and a broken arm in 2011. Injuries that were said to be the result of playing with other children
- A 13-month-old child who suffered injuries on three consecutive days including a goose egg to the head, a forehead bruise and torso scrapes
When questioned by the Woolfsmiths on Monday. Detective Cavilla offered his take on unregulated childcare following the police investigation into Mackenzy's death. . "My opinion is there should not be any unlicensed day homes. There just shouldn't be," said Cavilla. "Should there be more checks? Yeah, there should be."
Cavilla also issued an apology to the Woolfsmiths on behalf of the Calgary Police Service for the delay in the case.
Dr. Bamidele Adeagbo, the medical examiner who performed the autopsy into Mackenzy Woolfsmith's death, addressed the inquiry on Monday and confirmed Woolfsmith's injuries appeared too severe to have been caused by a short fall of two or three stairs. Adeagbo told the court the significant swelling around the young girl's brain, the hemorrhaging around her eyes and spinal cord, and the numerous bruises spoke to the likelihood of a forceful push down a staircase.
The cause of Woolfsmith's death was determined to be multiple blunt force trauma.
The fatality inquiry is being held in provincial court this week and recommendations will be made at its conclusion to help prevent similar tragedies from happening in the future.
With files from CTV's Jordan Kanygin