Originally created 06/19/03

Day care worker in wreck is fired



The owner of an Augusta day care fired an employee this week for failing to properly restrain two children who were injured when the employee wrecked a company van.

Jacqueline Habersham, co-owner of Wee Creative day care, said she fired Vicie Jones and ordered other employees to check children to make sure they are properly restrained before transporting them.

"The reason I let her go was because of the negligence on her part," Ms. Habersham said.

Rahkeam Jacobs, 11, and his sister, Kishma, 4, required three days in the hospital after being ejected Monday when Ms. Jones wrecked while driving the children home. Rahkeam was wearing only a lap belt, and Kishma had no restraints and was not in a booster seat, according to their mother, Twana Perry.

Rahkeam suffered a broken collarbone and a gash to his head; Kishma has broken ribs, cuts to her legs and blood in her lungs, Ms. Perry said. Both were treated at Medical College of Georgia Hospital's Children Medical Center and released Wednesday night.

"They went through the windshield. If (they were) properly restrained, they wouldn't have gone through the window," Ms. Perry said.

Ms. Jones, 38, was cited for failure to yield after the wreck Monday afternoon that occurred in heavy rains at Rosier Road and Wentworth Drive, a sheriff's report states. A Ford Contour driven by Nilka Flemming struck the van when it pulled out in front of her, causing the van to spin around and strike a stop sign, a report states.

The wreck has been reported to the child care licensing section in the Georgia Department of Human Resources for review.

Reach Greg Rickabaugh at (706) 828-3851 or greg.rickabaugh@augustachronicle.com.