Police: Day care restrained toddlers in playpens

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MAPLEWOOD, Mo. — Police in the St. Louis suburb of Maplewood are continuing to investigate an unlicensed home day care center where an infant died last month after finding toddlers restrained in playpens.

Police were called to the home Nov. 16 for a 3-month-old girl in cardiac arrest. She was pronounced dead on arrival at St. Louis Children’s Hospital.

Police and court documents obtained by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch showed that an investigation found plastic shelving and crates were placed on top of playpens to keep toddlers from “escaping.”

Court documents say officers smelled alcohol on the owner’s breath and an empty wine box in the trash.

The center has closed and the owner says she’s moving. She says police mischaracterized conditions in the home. No criminal charges have been filed.

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