SEARINGTOWN, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — A nanny on Long Island is facing charges that she abused a newborn baby, and the family that hired the woman does not want it to happen to anyone else.
They spoke exclusively to CBS2’s Jessica Borg.
Baby nurse Stacy Sakeran, 57, was arrested this past Friday. The live-in nanny was accused of abusing the 12-day-old girl at her employers’ Searingtown home, and there was allegedly proof on the family’s surveillance cameras.
The arrest made parents everywhere wince.
“I had someone I could trust as much as I trust myself,” said Sarah Birnbaum of Manhattan.
But that trust was broken in that Searingtown home. Nassau County police said Sakeran slapped the girl during two separate incidents in one week.
“We’re, you know, trying to hold up the best we can. It’s very stressful,” father Sibi John told CBS2’s Borg in the exclusive interview this past weekend, calling it a living nightmare.
Sakeran was referred to the family by Lullaby Services. On the agency’s website, it says it will “provide you with the most experienced, professional and loving baby nurses.”
CBS2’s Borg called the owner, Josephine Chrouch, for a comment Monday. She hung up right away.
When Borg called back a few moments later, it went straight to voicemail. Chrouch did not respond to an email.
“This is the first time we’ve had, you know, a nanny,” Sibi said. “This is all new to us.”
The father said the cameras in the baby’s room are obvious.
Chrouch reportedly placed Sakeran on her baby nurse referral list two months ago.
Experts recommend that parents interview the baby nurse or nanny in person and check references, before hiring them.
Saul Moskowitz, the co-founder of Absolute Best Care in Manhattan, advised making sure the references are current.
“People do change,” Moskowitz said. “May be somebody that might have been good 10 years ago, might not be that same great person today.”
In this case, the father of the baby girl heard the newborn screaming during the second incident and checked the nanny-cam.
Nanny and registered pediatric nurse Brigid DeMerse said a baby crying in pain is distinct.
“A higher pitch, louder, you know, may be a little bit rhythmic,” DeMerse said.
Experts also recommend looking for nanny agencies with an office. The owner of Lullaby Services only has a Post Office box listed.
Sakeran was arraigned last week at Nassau County District Court on two counts of second-degree assault and two counts of endangering the welfare of a child. She pleaded not guilty.
A Stay Away Order of Protection was granted for the family, Borg reported.
The girl was taken to the hospital to be evaluated and is back home with her family.