- A woman used a false wall to conceal 26 kids at her daycare in Colorado, police said.
- An affidavit said some of he kids were found with soiled or wet diapers and were thirsty.
- The owner, Carla Faith, was sentenced to six years in prison on Thursday.
A former daycare owner was sentenced to six years in prison for keeping 26 children hidden in the basement of a facility in 2019, Howard Black, a spokesman for the 4th Judicial District Attorney’s Office in Colorado, told Insider.
In August, Carla Faith, who owned the Play Mountain Place facility in Colorado Springs, pleaded guilty to 26 counts of child abuse, one count of attempting to influence a peace officer, and three counts of operating a daycare without a license, KRDO reported.
Insider previously reported Faith’s arrest in December 2019. Police at the time said they visited the daycare facility in November 2019 after getting complaints that it was hosting more kids than Faith’s license allowed her to care for, which was only six.
One complaint alleged Faith was “possibly hiding” the children in the home. When police arrived, Faith told them there were no children present, but one officer heard a child crying and saw a pile of backpacks, according to a police affidavit.
Police said Faith refused to cooperate but they eventually found a false wall that led to a furnished basement where they found 26 children and two adults.
The affidavit said the kids were all under three and that police noticed “many of the children had soiled or wet diapers, were sweating, and were very thirsty upon contact.”
Some of the parents of the kids who were at the daycare said their children are dealing with anxiety and behavioral issues.
Kim Marshall, who had two kids at the daycare, told KOAA-TV they are still receiving counseling.
“We sleep with the lights on in our house,” she said. “My kids are anxious. They are fearful of the world.”
Three employees of Faith’s daycare were also charged in the case, KKTV reported.
One, Valerie Fresquez, took a plea deal and testified at Faith’s hearing, KRDO reported. Another, Christina Swauger, was found guilty of the same charges as Faith but has not been sentenced. A third, Katelynn Nelson, never showed up to court and a warrant has been issued for her, according to KKTV.