Three women are facing 26 felony charges after police say they found loaded handguns, alcohol, daggers and other sharp objects inside a daycare in northwest Indiana.
Authorities say Merrillville police officers and the Indiana Department of Children's Services made an unannounced check on a home daycare at 1730 W. 53rd Tuesday. When they arrived, officials encountered a mother who said she was there to check on her 4-year-old son who had suffered a head injury. She said the daycare alerted her but the owner would not open the door.
Officers climbed through a window of the home and found the young boy on a bed surrounded by bloody napkins with an open wound on his forehead, police said. It was not immediately known how he was hurt.
The boy was one of 15 children police discovered to be inside the home at the time. Three other children were missing from the daycare and later found in a different location, according to police.
During a search of the home, authorities found two loaded handguns, two shotgun, daggers, and sharp blades to be within reach of the children, police said. Bottles of whiskey and vodka were strewn on the floor of the bedroom where the children were found, according to police.
Tawana Cole, Roberta Sanders, and Adriana Johnson were each charged with one count of neglect of a dependant resulting in bodily injury and multiple counts of neglect of a dependent and criminal confinement.
Cole has been arrested and police are searching for Sanders and Johnson. An attorney for Cole, who is on probation for battery with a deadly weapon, could not immediately be reached for comment.
Police said the home daycare center’s license had expired in March, and the daycare was only approved for a maximum capacity of 12 children.