The former owner of family day care Nicole D’Anjou Delage admits to being “harder than another”, but denies having brutalized the eight-month-old baby or any other child.
The retired 69-year-old drops her satchel, adorned with several miniature stuffed animals. She then advances to testify, seated, before Judge Marie-Claude Gilbert of the Court of Quebec who will have to decide whether or not she is guilty of aggravated assault, assault causing bodily harm and criminal negligence.
Nicole D’Anjou Delage had a daycare center for eight years in the basement of her 1st Avenue home in Charlesbourg. She was accredited by the Ministry of Family and affiliated to the coordinating office of the CPE Les Petits Mulots.
In early December 2014, she accepted into her daycare a very young eight-month-old girl, newly arrived from Burkina Faso.
Nicole D’Anjou Delage testified that from the start, the baby did not look fit. Silly, the girl had diarrhea and refused to eat. Three days after the baby’s arrival, another child gave her a TV choke on her head, says the babysitter. “I played the child … well, not strong,” says Nicole D’Anjou Delage.
On two separate days, the babysitter had to do the resuscitation maneuvers because the baby seemed unconscious after the nap.
On December 16, 2014, the baby’s mother arrives as she finishes the maneuvers. On the advice of the babysitter, the mother decides to take the girl to the hospital.
Wanting to put on the winter coat for her baby, the mother would have banged the baby’s head on the counter, says Nicole D’Anjou Delage.
A CHUL pediatrician who examined the child testified before the court that the lesions observed in the child’s brain and eye were caused by a trauma the size or strength of which would be comparable to an accident involving self or to a fall of several floors.
The eight-month-old baby had head trauma and broken wrists. She was hospitalized for four days.
Nicole D’Anjou Delage’s lawyer, Me Marco Robert, will repeat her question a few times: did you do anything that could have had consequences for the child?
“I’m nervous, but I have good control of myself,” says the accused. I did not brew this child or do anything about it. ”
Since 2009, interveners at CPE Les Petits Mulots have observed a number of sudden gestures by Nicole D’Anjou Delage with children. She had received notices of non-compliance, but her conduct was never sanctioned by the CPE’s board of directors.