A daycare worker has been arrested for slipping drugs into her young charges' pancakes to make them sleepy and quiet. Tammy Eppeley has been charged with endangering children -- one of them her own 2-year-old daughter -- after police say they found evidence that she was slipping Benadryl and melatonin into pancakes that she then served to kids ages 2 to 5. Eppeley says she only gave them the sleepy aids with permission of the parents. What's going on here?
Eppeley reportedly was "bragging" about how "perfectly still and being quiet or asleep" her charges were in a video that she sent to a friend of hers, who promptly went to the cops.
Now Eppeley says that the cops are "obsessed" with trying to put her into jail, when in point of fact she only gave the sleep-inducing medications to the kids who were "hyperactive" and that parents were aware of it. She did admit to making jokes about the situation in text messages, but says that they were just jokes. None of the kids were harmed.
Giving kids Benadryl or melatonin is nothing new -- apparently a lot of parents do it. Certainly a lot of parents joke about it. No word on whether the cops actually tested the pancakes or are just going on Eppeley's "jokes." She claims she said things like: "It was, 'Good grief, I wish these kids would go to sleep, I wish I could drug them.' " But Eppeley says she regrets making that comment.
Eppeley was only caring for six children, including one of her own, at home, so apparently she didn't need a license. Here's my question: If Eppeley didn't want to deal with hyperactive children, then why is she running a daycare in her home?
This sounds like a case of someone doing something stupid, and then exaggerating it, and then talking to the wrong people (or the right people, as the case may be), and then getting into a heaping helping of trouble. If you're not willing to take full responsibility for the kids in your charge -- without drugging them -- then you shouldn't be in that business. I don't care what parent gave you permission. Kids shouldn't be doped up during the day when they should be playing and learning. But should over-the-counter Benadryl and the natural hormone melatonin -- which many parents give their kids -- be considered hardcore drugs that could land a woman in prison? If she did it with parents' permission, no. But I still don't think this woman is cut out to run a daycare.
Do you think what she did was wrong?
Image via Westerville Police Dept.