Abbotsford baby sitter gets prison time for neglecting children in her care
ABBOTSFORD, Wis. (WSAW) - The 56-year-old daycare worker convicted of locking babies in playpens for several hours at a time, in addition to other egregious acts was transferred to Taycheedah Correctional Institution on Tuesday to begin serving her 2 1/2-year prison sentence.
Naomi Konieczny reached a plea deal in her case in July. She was sentenced on Sept. 3. She’ll also spend seven years and six months on probation once she is released from prison.
In December 2019, Naomi Konieczny, her daughter Rachel Konieczny and her husband, Gary Konieczny were charged for running an unlicensed daycare in Abbotsford.
According to the complaint, two specialists along with a Colby-Abbotsford Police detective and two child protective services workers made an unannounced visit to Konieczny’s home that April. They immediately found three children, including her granddaughter, inside the home, which Konieczny acknowledged she was caring for until her daughter walked in with a fourth child. Konieczny then told investigators these were the only four children in her care.
Investigators began inspecting the home, which they describe as cluttered with boxes piled throughout the kitchen and dining area. Konieczny told investigators the back two rooms were being painted. Those rooms both had their doors closed. Investigators entered the first room, which they describe as dimly lit and found six children inside: two were sitting in highchairs with no toys, food, or activities, two were strapped in car seats on the bed, and two others were in separate pack and plays.
In the other room, they described as “dark with just the light from the window” and filled about 5-feet high with piles of boxes and clothing. They found another child in a pack and play.
“She seemed scared and her face had tear streaks,” the investigator wrote.
They then found another child in a pack and play covered by objects and plywood with nails sticking out of it.
Konieczny told investigators as they were lifting the objects off, “don’t do that! He’ll jump out!” She said she needed to keep the pack and play covered or he will keep getting out.
The person who made the complaint to DCF told investigators these children would be left in these rooms for six hours at a time and were verbally abused for soiling their diapers. The complainant also said children are pushed to the floor, dragged across the floor, and heads banged in the corner to stand in time-out.
Parents were contacted to pick up their children after being found in the rooms.
CPS workers directed Konieczny’s daughter, Rachel Konieczny to change the children’s diapers and the report says as she was carrying the two car seats from the back room she let them hit people and objects. The report also describes Rachel Konieczny as not gentle with the children as she was changing them and then would give the diaper to the child to throw away. Investigators noticed one child “had a bad rash and very full, soiled diaper.”
Naomi Konieczny was fined $1000 for not complying with an order to stop operating the unlicensed daycare and was again ordered to stop running the daycare. The daycare is still under investigation by law enforcement.
This is not the first time this daycare has been investigated. In 2015, Clark County Department of Social Services reported finding 10 children in her care without a license. State law requires a license for caring for four or more unrelated children under the age of 7.
DCF investigated and Konieczny only confirmed the number of children visible to investigators, changing the number as they came in the room.
In this first violation, Konieczny was fined $100 and was ordered to stop the daycare. Documents show her signature acknowledging she was operating a daycare without a license, marking the box indicating she was not interested in getting a license.
In November, 2018 DCF investigated again after a complaint she was caring for about 12 children, at least four of which were under the age of 7 and not related to her. The investigator found three unrelated children younger than 7, along with her granddaughter. Konieczny told the investigator she care for several children after school, but they are all older than 7 and was in compliance with the law.
The investigator concluded the complaint as unsubstantiated.
The person who made the initial complaint in 2019 acknowledged investigators had come in to inspect before, “but they didn’t go into the backroom(s) where they are hiding the kids.”
Naomi’s daughter, Rachel Konieczny was sentenced to four years in prison for her role.
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