• DCF investigates after WFTV uncovers convicted felon working at day care

    Updated:

    ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - An Orange County day care could be shut down Wednesday, after WFTV discovered a convicted felon was taking care of children.

    Kidz at Play day care on Old Winter Garden Road in Orlo Vista is the same day care that WFTV also found out was being run by a convicted criminal.

    The Department of Children and Families said it didn't know the criminals were working there until WFTV's investigation.

    Kizzie Giddens is a convicted felon. She's been arrested five times in the last 12 years, including two grand theft charges and a disorderly conduct charge.

    "If we're able to validate that this person is not supposed to be there, even in a volunteer capacity, our response will be swift and it will be serious," said DCF representative Carrie Hoeppner.

    WFTV first investigated the troubled day care on Tuesday when it found out the owner, Tonique Brown, had been arrested six times.

    WFTV also found out Brown is one of dozens of local day care workers who have received a controversial exemption or second chance from DCF, despite their pasts.

    "Well, trust is the foundation. We extend an amount of trust to these providers," said Hoeppner.

    After WFTV showed its findings,  an inspector went to the day care.

    DCF said Brown first denied that Giddens worked there, but then claimed she was a volunteer, which is still illegal.

    Brown refused to answer WFTV's questions.


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