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Deputies: Intoxicated nanny whipped 8-month-old with a towel to stop baby from crying

Posted at 9:54 AM, Apr 11, 2019

SARASOTA, Fla. — A nanny has been arrested after she left two children under her care with multiple bruises and admitted she was intoxicated while she was taking care of the children, deputies say.

Two Sarasota parents contacted the Sarasota County Sheriff's Office because they believed their 8-month-old and 2-year-old children were abused by 25-year-old Sarai Rivera when Rivera watched their children recently.

The parents told deputies Rivera regularly babysits for their family and when they returned home, they noticed bruising on both children. During a forensic exam, the nurses confirmed the bruising was not accidental. Nurses concluded that the bruising was consistent with intentional grabbing and pinching.

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Detectives interviewed Rivera and she admitted that she grabbed the 8-month-old child by the chin and "whipped her with a towel twice in the face, to get the infant to stop crying," according to a press release. Rivera also admitted that the 2-year-old's bruises were caused by "pinching or sucking on the child's neck too hard." Rivera told detectives she was intoxicated on the evening she was caring for the children.

Rivera was charged with two counts of child abuse and she remains in protective custody, according to the Sheriff's Office.