A teacher at a private preschool in Woodbridge, Va., was charged with assault and battery for allegedly biting a 13-month-old boy to punish the toddler for biting another teacher, police said Monday.
Prince William County police also have charged Nadia Choudhry, the daughter of the owners of the Goddard School, with failing to report the attack, alleging that she told a staff member who witnessed the incident not to tell police or Child Protective Services about it.
Theresa Brown, 24, of Woodbridge bit the child after he had bitten another teacher on Sept. 11, police said. Officer Jonathan Perok, a police spokesman, said the bite left a mark, but he did not know whether the boy needed medical attention.
Police said a witness reported the incident to the school’s management, and when Choudhry learned of it, she failed to report it to police or CPS, as is required by state law. Perok said Choudhry also advised at least one other staff member not to report it.
A day later, an anonymous caller reported the incident to CPS. Police went to the school to investigate on Sept. 16.
Choudhry, 24, of Manassas has been charged with failing to report child abuse or neglect, and police charged Brown with assault and battery. Both women turned themselves in to police on Friday. Brown was released on $2,000 secured bond, and bond information for Choudhry was not immediately available.
The school, on Staples Mill Plaza, enrolls children from infancy through kindergarten, according to its Web site.
Choudhry was taking over the school from her parents, said a spokesman for Goddard Systems, which is the parent company of the preschool franchise. Ghazalla Choudhry, who owns the Goddard School in Woodbridge with her husband, Max, said in a statement that her daughter had been removed from her position. She also said that the director of the school fired Brown on Sept. 12 after learning about the incident.