Woman accused of sexually abusing day care children sentenced to just 30 days

GROVE CITY, Ohio - A woman accused of sexually abusing children under 5 years old at her day care center was sentenced to just 30 days in jail.

Kimberly Hignite, 52, plead guilty Monday to 14 counts of misdemeanor child endangerent after originally being indicted on five counts of gross sexual imposition and 17 counts of child endangerment in June 2018.

Detectives in Grove City (Ohio) searched the non-registered center, which Hignite ran out of her home, in May 2018 after two children claimed they were sexually abused, the Columbus Dispatch reports.

Twenty three children were found in the home at the time of the search, ranging from 7 months to 5 years, but Hignite was not present. Her 71-year-old mother was the only adult on the premises.

Franklin County prosecutor Ron O'Brien shared details of Hignite's alleged crimes with WTTE last year. 

“It’s not touching somebody on the shoulder, touching them in an inappropriate place that is of a sexual nature. Hignite had touched them in their private areas and had two of the kids touch each other in private areas,” said O’Brien.

According to the Columbus Dispatch, parents said their children were force-fed medicine and had water and food withheld from them.

The charges of gross sexual imposition were dropped as part of a plea agreement, as were three of the child endangerment charges.

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