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Day-Care Worker Pins Kids to Mattresses as Discipline Control

Posted by on Nov. 12, 2009 at 9:53 PM
  • 19 Replies

Day-Care Worker Pins Kids to Mattresses as Discipline Control

A day-care operator admitted that she pinned children to mattresses as a form of discipline. Credit: Hennepin County Sheriff's Office

Arvilla Marie Lilly Meinhardt of Golden Valley, Minnesota runs a day-care center out of her home. Problem: She pins kids to mattresses as discipline control.

Yes, you read that right. The 70-year-old Meinhardt told authorities she had been using this bizarre discipline method "for about eight years on 2- and 3-year-olds who attended her in-home day care," according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune. The charges against her are "gross misdemeanor malicious punishment of a child and false imprisonment."

According to published reports, local police came to Meinhardt's little house of alleged horrors in order to investigate claims by a girl who was cared for by Meinhardt from 2003 to 2006. The girl is now 7 years old and "recently told her mother that Meinhardt used safety pins to pin her to a mattress during nap time," according to the Star Tribune.

Meinhardt's lawyer John Leunig defended his care-giving client, saying she "has a clean criminal record with not so much as a traffic ticket." Parents who were present at Meinhardt's court hearing "declined to comment."

What could the parents say? Can you imagine dropping your children off at day care and finding out years later that they were literally pinned to a mattress in order to keep them docile while napping?

If this turns out to be true, I, for one, would want her pinned to a mattress for a good, long nap behind bars.

What do you think about this?

by on Nov. 12, 2009 at 9:53 PM
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Replies (1-10):
by on Nov. 12, 2009 at 10:06 PM

I would be very upset.  I can't believe she got away with it that long.

Does she kind of look like the "Brain" from Pinky and the Brain to anyone else?  She is kind of scary looking. I don't know if I would have left my kids with her.

by on Nov. 12, 2009 at 10:08 PM

I hope they pin HER down!  That's just wrong.

by on Nov. 12, 2009 at 10:09 PM

Oh my goodness!!  I am a daycare provider and I couldn't even imagine having to do that to a child!!!  They are just babies!!  I feel sorry for what those parents must being thinking and going through!

by on Nov. 12, 2009 at 10:17 PM

Ugh.  I have no words.

by on Nov. 12, 2009 at 10:28 PM

I'm speechless. 

But that is why I stay home w/ my child/children if at all possible. 

by on Nov. 12, 2009 at 10:31 PM

People are so screwed up. 

by on Nov. 13, 2009 at 1:13 AM

Wow I run a daycare in my home and would never do that! Some people these days are seriously nuts!

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by on Nov. 13, 2009 at 6:35 AM

That's awful. Those poor families. :( 

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by on Nov. 13, 2009 at 6:45 AM

WOW, if that's true they should pin her to a mattress in her prison cell. You think your dropping your kids off to be taken of by a kind old grandma and then find out she's done this. And I hate will lawyers try to defend  something heinous by bringing up the criminal history. SO she hasn't even had a traffic ticket. Big whoop. She pinned little toddlers to mattresses. She still sucks.

by on Nov. 13, 2009 at 7:19 AM

That's just so wrong. 

No offense to any of you who run in home daycares because I know that they're not all bad, but I would never put my child in one.  I went to two different "babysitters" at different times when I was little.  The first one never fed me a breakfast I liked, I wouldn't eat rice crispies or cheese toast and those were the only choices we ever got.  She spanked us with a fly swatter too.  I didn't mention it to my mom until years later...  I just thought that she must have known, but she was pissed.  The other one, I was a little older, made us clean her house.  I'm not just talking about cleaning up after ourselves.  We had to clean her room, her boys' rooms, the bathroom...  I remember getting yelled at for not doing the dishes the right way.  I had never done dishes before!  She also had a daughter that liked to pretend she was a dog ALL THE TIME.  It was weird and my sister and I would get tired of playing with her, but if we didn't we'd get in trouble.  It sucked.

My husband also had a bad experience.  Appearantly his sitter was great with his older sister, but treated him like crap.  Even put him in the trunk of a car once and drove around with him back there!  And again his mom didn't find out about it until years later.  Kids kind of just figure that when your parents trust someone to care for you that they know what's going on and that it must be okay....

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