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State shuts down Sayles day care temporarily
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LATHROP – The home-based child care business owned and operated by Lathrop Mayor Kristy Sayles has been temporarily shut down by the California Department of Social Services.

The department confirmed Thursday that it has temporarily suspended Sayles’ family child care home license based on two alleged incidents of physical child abuse at the home which resulted in visible injuries. The first alleged incident happened on March 22, 2008 with the second one occurring on Oct. 4 for which the mayor’s husband, Thomas Sayles, was arrested and booked into the San Joaquin County Jail. The incidents involved Sayles’ children and not any of the youth entrusted in her care by others.

The department also “alleges that Kristy Sayles failed to protect children from physical and mental abuse by Thomas Sayles.”
In addition to the license revocation, the department has filed a request that Thomas and Kristy Sayles be excluded “from employment in, presence in, and contact with clients or any facility licensed by the department.”

Kristy and Thomas Sayles will have an opportunity to appeal the request for license revocation, according to the office of Oscar Ramirez, the department’s public information officer for public affairs and outreach programs of the state Social Services.

If either Kristy or Thomas requests an appeal, they will be given a chance to do so in an administrative hearing. If neither files an appeal, the department will issue a final decision and revoke Kristy Sayles’ child care license. The report does not indicate that Thomas Sayles also holds a license on the family child care business. If a final revocation judgment is issued, both Kristy and Thomas Sayles will be excluded from “all facilities licensed by the department,” according to the information provided by Ramirez.

According to the state department, Kristy Sayles’ child care operation has been licensed since June 30, 2000 and has a capacity of 14 children.

Department cites child abuse incidents in March ’08, Oct. ‘10
The state department based its request for license revocation from incidents of alleged child abuse by Thomas Sayles reported to police on March 22, 2008 and on Oct. 5, 2010.

The reported physical abuse cases did not involve any of the children enrolled in the mayor’s Early Childhood Education day care. The reported victim in this case was the 8-year-old son of the mayor and the stepson of Thomas Sayles.

The boy received a black eye on one eye and scratches in the other eye when he was struck by his stepfather for allegedly disobeying his order, according to the report provided by Sheriff’s deputies who investigated the incident. The mayor also confirmed the police reports in a statement released to the news media on Thursday when she scheduled a press conference, and added that she was at a council meeting at City Hall when the abuse happened Monday evening. She told the news media that her children were already in bed when she went home Monday night and did not find out about the incident until the following day, Tuesday, when she called police to make a report. Thomas Sayles was arrested and booked in San Joaquin County Jail on charges of felony child abuse shortly before 8 o’clock that evening. The charges were later reduced by a Manteca Superior Court judge to a misdemeanor and lowered the $50,000 bail to $25,000. Thomas Sayles posted bail after his arraignment and was released on his own recognizance pending a future court appearance.

On the March 2008 physical abuse incident, court papers obtained by the Manteca Bulletin shows that a restraining order was filed by Kristy Sayles against Thomas Sayles at the Family Law Court in Stockton. The file includes a declaration by Kristy Sayles stating that Thomas Sayles inflicted physical injury to two of her children, then aged 7 and 5, from a previous marriage. She also stated in the same declaration that “this is not the first incidence of violence that the respondent has been engaged in with both the children and me.”

Included in the filing was an emergency protective order served by the Sheriff’s Department. The order was for the protection of Kristy Sayles and her four children from Thomas Sayles.

Documents at the time also show that Kristy Sayles filed for divorce from Thomas Sayles. A fact that she corroborates in her press release to the news media on Oct. 7, 2010.

Her press release stated: “Mayor Sayles and Tom Sayles have been separated since March and she immediately filed for an emergency restraining order.  The 5-day emergency restraining order was converted to a temporary restraining order with a duration of 6 weeks.   Mayor Sayles went to court before the order expired and asked that it be made permanent but the Court only granted a 90-day extension.”

A message left for Mayor Sayles Thursday afternoon was not immediately returned. The Bulletin was unable to leave any message seeking comment about the license revocation filed because her mailbox was full and could not accept any messages.