On last Wednesday, August 4, Denver's Park Hill United Methodist Daycare Center was running as usual, its doors open to the 150 plus young children who attend the daycare. The facility has been open for nearly 30 years, and now allegations that a summer hire sexually assaulted multiple children enrolled in the daycare have led to the daycare's doors being closed.
Benjamin Janicki, only 20 years old, is being held by Denver officials and investigated for his reported illegal behavior exhibited at the now closed childcare facility. He was arrested on August 4 after one report claimed Janicki had "licked and tickled" a young child while working at the daycare.
Two days later, the one report was compounded by a second claim, and now the accused Denver man is even deeper in the fight to protect his future freedom and reputation. No formal charges have yet been filed, but Janicki will potentially be charged with at least one count of sexual assault by a person in position of trust and sexual assault on a child.
The media has spun this story by emphasizing a judge's recent decision to increase Janicki's bail from $150,000 to $500,000. Why the judge decided to up the bail amount is not public knowledge, however, and could very well be because of the second report made known on Friday.
According to a case update published yesterday, Janicki has admitted to abusing up to 13 kids at the daycare. Parents of children who attended the daycare already were afraid upon hearing of the first report, and their fears have intensified as this case has progressed. They have been advised to watch for changes in behavior among their kids that might signify recent sexual abuse.
We will let you know how this case develops, including whether more families come forward with allegations and if Janicki is formally charged with a crime. Janicki has never been arrested in the state of Colorado.
9News.com: Daycare worker arrested after sex assault allegations (8/7/2010)
ABC7News: Report: Man Admits to Abusing as Many as 13 children (8/9/2010)