A judge this week ordered an Avondale daycare to be vacated after a child was diagnosed with lead poisoning and court documents say testing revealed “hazardous lead paint conditions” inside.
The ruling, by Hamilton County Municipal Judge Bernie Bouchard, came as a state agency already was seeking to revoke the owner’s daycare license for allegedly smoking marijuana while children were at the daycare, according to our media partners at the Cincinnati Enquirer.
The Alexzandria Allen Daycare was housed inside Allen’s apartment in a three-story, U-shaped building on North Fred Shuttlesworth Circle that records say was built in 1928.
On Nov. 8, 2017, the date of the most recent inspection by Job and Family Services, Allen was caring for nine children.
She did not return messages seeking comment.
City health department officials began a separate investigation last year after one child tested positive for lead poisoning, and it was determined the child had not been exposed to lead at home.
Lead paint was found in the daycare after a September 2017 inspection by the health department. Loose and flaking paint on surfaces "accessible to small children" contained enough lead to be considered hazardous, according to documents in the case before Bouchard.
The building’s owner, Elijah Rashaed of West Palm Beach, Florida, was given an opportunity to hire a licensed contractor to remove the lead. That never happened, and the health department eventually brought the case to the city prosecutor’s office, which charged Rashaed with a misdemeanor for violating the health code.
At the same time, Job and Family Services was investigating Allen. At a Nov. 8, 2017 inspection, Allen initially denied marijuana use, but later admitted it after inspectors “observed marijuana in the bathroom of the…residence.”
The documents say Allen then admitted smoking marijuana in the apartment the previous morning but denied there were children in her care at the time. Officials reviewed electronic attendance records, which indicated children were present in the daycare, according to the documents.
In December 2017, Ohio Job and Family Services notified Allen that it was preparing to revoke her daycare license.
She is accused of violating regulations that say a provider can’t be under the influence of drugs while caring for children, and illegal drugs or substances can’t be on the premises.
A hearing surrounding Allen's license is set for May 8.