Unlicensed day care owner charged with abusing infant


by Adam Walser


Posted on January 7, 2013 at 6:22 PM

Updated Tuesday, Jan 8 at 7:24 AM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- Police have charged the owner of an unlicensed home day care center with felony child abuse after she allegedly struck a crying child in her care.

“She was hit up here,” Kimberly Slaughter said, demonstrating where her 18-month-old baby Scarlet was allegedly struck in the head. “There was a clear hand print on her face.”

Slaughter recently moved to Louisville from Horse Cave, Kentucky and needed care for her two children.

She turned to Craig’s List, where she found an ad touting 20 years of childcare experience and lots of individualized care.

She went to Tina Timberlake-Whitaker’s home on Belmar Drive, off Preston Highway. Slaughter left Scarlet and her 2-year-old brother Clyde for two weeks.

When Slaughter picked up the children on December 21, she knew immediately something was wrong, when she saw three large bruises on the little girl’s face.

Slaughter admitted that price was part of the reason she selected the day care, since Timberlake-Whitaker charged only $90 per week for both children.

“The problem is exactly what happened, “ Susan Vessels, Director of Community Coordinated Child Care said.

The agency helps parents find affordable, licensed, quality child care in the Louisville area.

Timberlake-Whitaker’s facility was not. She was arrested Friday and arraigned Saturday on the charge.

Timberlake-Whitaker was ordered not to have contact with any children until her case goes to trial.

Police and Child Protective Services are investigating.