Daycare worker's tip leads to child abuse, neglect arrests - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Daycare worker's tip leads to child abuse, neglect arrests

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Laci Elizabeth Welford and Jonathan Blake Smith (Photo source: Jackson Co. Sheriff's Dept.) Laci Elizabeth Welford and Jonathan Blake Smith (Photo source: Jackson Co. Sheriff's Dept.)
JACKSON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) -

Two people are under arrest in Jackson County after a daycare worker alerted authorities about injuries to a two-year-old child.

Jonathan Blake Smith, 20, is charged with one count of Felony Child Abuse. Laci Elizabeth Welford, 19, is charged with one count of Misdemeanor Child Neglect.

Investigators said a worker at a Berry Special Place Day Care Center in Moss Point noticed the child had substantial injuries resulting from what appeared to be a severe beating. That worker called investigators with the Jackson County Sheriff's Department.

Within hours, deputies arrested Smith and Welford at their home at Singing River Apartment in Gautier.

If convicted, Welford faces a fine of no more than $1,000 and up to a year in jail. Smith could face up to 10 years in prison.

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