MORRISTOWN, Tenn. (WATE) — An investigation is underway for a possible child neglect case in Hamblen County, according to the sheriff’s office. The update from the sheriff comes after three dozen children were sent home from an alleged unlicensed daycare. Currently, no charges have been filed.
The Hamblen County Sheriff’s Office said Thursday that on July 7, Hamblen County Sheriff deputies were dispatched to a residence on Jaybird Road to assist the Tennessee Department of Children Services (DCS) and the Department of Human Services in regards to possible child neglect.
During the investigation, Hamblen County deputies contacted the District Attorney’s Office to consult on the conditions encountered by the deputies. Following the advice given by personnel of the District Attorney’s Office, HCSO said Thursday that its sheriff’s deputies have not filed any charges at this time.
Three dozen children were sent home Thursday from what the Hamblen County Sheriff has described as an unlicensed daycare. The unlicensed daycare was operating on Jaybird Road in Morristown. Sheriff Esco Jarnigan said his office is assisting both the Tennessee Department of Children’s Services and the Tennessee Department of Human Services in the investigation.
HCSO said the investigations are ongoing.
Tennessee DCS defines child neglect as “failure to provide for a child’s physical survival needs to the extent that there is harm, or risk of harm, to the child’s health or safety.”
According to Tennessee DCS, everyone in Tennessee is a mandated reporter if they suspect child abuse and neglect. Tennessee Code Annotated 37-1-403(i) (1) requires all persons to report suspected cases of child abuse or neglect.
“Any person who has knowledge of or is called upon to render aid to any child who is suffering from or has sustained any wound, injury, disability, or physical or mental condition shall report such harm immediately if the harm is of such a nature as to reasonably indicate that it has been caused by brutality abuse, or neglect or that, on basis of available information, reasonably appears to have been caused by brutality, abuse, or neglect.”
To contact the Tennessee Child Abuse Hotline, there are two methods:
- Web: https://apps.tn.gov/carat/ in non-emergency situations only.