Nannies are invaluable to busy families nationwide because a large percentage of households work 40-plus hours a week. Many parents find their nannies online, and essentially trust strangers to care for their children. But what happens when caregivers break that faith? I'd like to share with you four nannies who not only destroyed the trust of their employers, but also broke the law while doing so.
Ill Deeds in Illinois
Every day for six weeks, the Koopmeiners dropped off their three-month-old daughter, Rylan, at her babysitter’s house in Waukegan, Illinois. They originally found the sitter, Sarah Gumm, online. On July 27, 2012, the parents dropped off Rylan early in the morning. They did not realize that this would be the last time they would see their daughter alive. In the afternoon, police received a phone call from Gumm. She reported that Rylan was not breathing. Paramedics arrived and rushed her to the hospital, but it was too late -- Rylan was dead. The cause of death was a skull fracture and crannial hemmorage. Gumm told police that she was trying to change Rylan’s diaper on a wooden table when the baby got fussy and started to squirm around. Frustrated, she held the child above the table and slammed her down on the surface. This past February, Gumm was found guilty of murder and was sentenced to 23 years in prison.
Nightmare in New York
On October 25, 2012, Marina Krim left her Upper West Side apartment to take her young daughter to a swimming lesson. She left her other two children, six-year-old Lucia and two-year-old Leo in the care of Yosalyn Ortega, their nanny of two years. When the mother returned, she looked for Lucia and Leo, and headed to the bathroom. What she saw horrified her. Lucia and Leo were laying in the bathtub, dead from knife wounds. Ortega lay beside them and upon seeing the mother, she attempted suicide by stabbing herself in the neck with a kitchen knife. Ortega told police that she killed the children because of financial problems and because she was angry at the Krims for making her clean in addition to caring for the children. She also stated that she was being treated for a mental illness, and that she had no memory of killing them. Last month, on April 14th, Ortega rejected a plea deal of 30 years to life in return for guilty pleas to both murders. The case is expected to go to trial later this year.
Money Hungry in Maryland
In May 2013, a family from Greenbelt, Maryland discovered that their nanny, Kadiatu Sahid Kamara, had been stealing money from them for two years. Kamara wrote about 118 checks from their money market account by forging the signature on the account and depositing the stolen funds into her bank account. With the $431,542 she stole, she purchased a house in Sierra Leone, sent money transfers and played at a casino in nearby West Virginia. The family fired Kamara immediately after the discovery and alerted law enforcement. On October 27, 2014, Kamara was sentenced to three years in prison, and was ordered to pay restitution of $431,542.
Theft in Texas
Police in Fort Worth and Frisco began investigating a nanny after she was arrested and charged with theft from the Tautfest family in Allen, Texas on January 15, 2016. The nanny, Judith Sturrock Burress, is accused of stealing about $3,000 in property from the Tautfests. When the family noticed things were missing, such as a new scarf and old cell phones, they called the police. When officers arrested Burress they discovered not only stolen credit cards and prescription drugs, but some of Mrs. Tautfest’s belongings. Although no charges have been filed in the other two cases, police are investigating Burress for stealing a U.S. Navy medal and ring from a family in Fort Worth and for looting $4,500 in jewelry from a Frisco family. Burress's attorney said she denies doing anything wrong. She was released on $5,000 bond in January, according to Collin County jail records.
Remember -- it's imperative to perform a background check on prospective caregivers, as most criminals may not be upfront about their past discretions. Stealth Advise can provide detailed background checks on any nanny, babysitter, and daycare. Contact us today to find out more.
Children playing by ann_jutatip. Link to https://flic.kr/p/4Win59