MESA, AZ – A day care worker in Mesa was fired over a picture she posted on social media.
The photo shows the 19-year-old worker holding her middle finger up in front of a young child’s face. The caption reads, “swear i (sic) love kids.”
She posted it on Snapchat and the picture made its way to at least one parent who contacted the day care’s owner.
The owner of Kids Play, Dorothy Thornton, confronted the worker, and said she immediately confessed.
“She was crying and saying she’d made a mistake,” Thornton said.
She said her staff member then showed her an entire video of the incident.
“She’s filming and then I see a finger birdie,” Thornton said, “I had to let her go. She shouldn’t have had her cellphone out. She’s watching kids.”
The day care owner called the Mesa Police Department to investigate further accusations of neglect. Others accused her worker of taking videos of children playing in toilets and fighting.
Thornton said no evidence was found, and police say no crimes were committed.
Thornton she feels badly for her now-former employee, particularly because the young woman has received death threats over the original picture.
Snapchat is a mobile messaging app that is particularly popular with teens and young adults. It allows users to send photos and videos that are deleted within seconds. In addition to Snaps, which last up to 10 seconds, users also can send Stories, which are Snaps that last for up to 24 hours.
Although Snaps vanish from Snapchat’s servers, there is nothing to stop users from capturing screenshots of Snaps on their phones.