March 6, 2018
: Three daycare employees from Des Plaines, Illinois, were arrested and charged with “drugging” toddlers before nap time.
Kristen Lauletta, 32, Jessica Heyse, 19, and Ashley Helfenbein, 25, were arrested and charged with two counts of battery and two counts of endangering the life of a child, according to Des Plaines Police Cmdr. Christopher Mierzwa.
The three women worked at Kiddie Junction Day Care – and allegedly handed out melatonin gummy bears to the kids – to ensure that they’d SLEEP during nap time.
Melatonin is a hormone made by the pineal gland in the brain which helps to control your sleep and wake cycles. Buying it is legal, and there are even melatonin sleep aids available for young children, but giving them to children without first getting the parents consent is not okay and it is never meant to be taken over long periods of time otherwise it could be dangerous.
“I’m upset, and I will be at the court date cause my son was one of the ones that was in the room,” one mother told WGN9 anonymously. “Kiddie Junction is an awesome place, my son has been here for awhile now, and the teachers have been awesome for the most part, other than these three bad apples.”
According to police, the workers didn’t think there was anything wrong with passing out the “natural supplement” to calm them down before nap time. But the workers never informed parents that their children were given the sleep-aid, police said.
There is currently an ongoing investigation into the incident.