Troy daycare employee accused of slamming 3-year-old boy on ground in 2015

Child allegedly suffered brain injury

TROY, Mich. – A Troy daycare is facing a lawsuit that alleges a worker violently slammed a 3-year-old boy on the ground while he was jumping up and down.

Read the lawsuit below.

Sarah Struzik, of Rochester Hills, claims her son was abused in 2015 at Rainbow Child Care Center on John R. He allegedly suffered a brain injury as a result.

"She picked him up by the shoulders and threw them down. His head smacked a chair and laid on the floor unresponsive for five minutes," Struzik said.

She said her son, Garrett, suffered a traumatic brain injury and now has fine motor deficits.

Struzik also said she wasn't immediately notified of the incident. 

"[I was told] nothing, nothing, he could have died. I had no idea," she said. 

Instead, she got a call from a state investigator who asked if she had noticed any signs of abuse. She said she followed up with questions. 

"I asked directly why were they calling me, and they said, 'No reason, nothing to worry about,'" Struzik said. 

Then she got her hands on the state report accidentally because she was given the report by a friend. 

"I read in the report that many children had been hurt," Struzik said.

While reading the report, she noticed the conversation she had with the investigator was included and realized Garrett had been a victim.

"We're living with the effects to this day and it's going to be a long road for him [Garrett] and it's not gotten any easier. I trusted them [Rainbow Child Care Center] with my most prized possession. I don't ever feel safe to have anyone with my child ever again," she said. 

She said she questioned the facility about the incident, and was told the surveillance video did not work. 

"I was assured safety was a priority. They had video they claimed didn't work. I interviewed, I questioned everything that I was supposed to and they failed me. They failed my son. They failed our family," she said. 

The Struzik family is suing the company, the accused caregiver, the director of the facility at the time and some corporate representatives. The family said it's not about money but instead making sure their son is protected after a traumatic event.

"For me to be lied to for so long, they knew clearly that children were being hurt and they covered it up. They let my child be injured at the hands of a monster," Struzik said. 

The case is not a criminal matter at this time. The prosecutor's office declined to pursue the case and asked for more evidence. 

Below is the lawsuit;

About the Authors:

Koco joined the Local 4 News team in September of 2016. She was born and raised in Metro Detroit, attended Central Michigan University, and previously worked at WOOD-TV in Grand Rapids.