A Queens babysitter forced a 2-year-old boy's hands into scalding hot water under a faucet after she allegedly became frustrated that he wouldn't clean the syrup off his hands after a breakfast of waffles, prosecutors say.
The boy and his 3-year-old sister were dropped off at the home of 20-year-old Yvette Douglas in Cambria Heights Tuesday morning, and while eating breakfast, the boy got syrup on his hands and wouldn't cooperate with Douglas in cleaning his hands, according to the Queens district attorney's office.
The babysitter allegedly became frustrated and angry, and held both of the toddler's hands in running water at the kitchen sink to wash them, gradually turning up the temperature from warm to hot, prosecutors said.
The boy cried and struggled to remove his hands from the water, but Douglas kept them under the water, prosecutors allege. After about two minutes, she saw that the boy's hands had turned red and the skin "sagged."
The babysitter called the boy's mother and told her he'd been burned from pulling a pot of boiling water off the stove, according to the district attorney's office. The child was taken to Nassau University Hospital Burn Unit and admitted for severe burns to his hands.
The boy's hands were so badly burned he may need surgery, authorities said.
After hospital staffers observed the boy's injuries, they became suspicious of Douglas' account of how the boy got burned. She later admitted to police how the child received his injuries, prosecutors said.
"As a babysitter, the defendant had an obligation to provide a safe environment for the child and keep him from harm," D.A. Richard A. Brown said in a statement. "Instead, she is alleged to have tortured and caused him physical and emotional injury simply because he behaved like any other two-year-old child eating a plate of waffles with syrup."
Douglas has been charged with second-degree assault and child endangerment, and was awaiting arraignment in Queens Criminal Court Thursday. No attorney information was immediately available.