Yellow Brick Road daycare closed

By Nicole Bell - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - The Richmond daycare owner who had a child die in her care is officially out of business. Valerot Whitlow did not appeal the state's decision to revoke her daycare license. Despite the move Whitlow can still watch children and earn a living.

In the commonwealth you're required to have a license if you're watching 6 or more children who aren't related to you, but if Whitlow decides to monitor less than six children she'd be considered a babysitter.

Valerot Whitlow is out of business. The gate at her daycare center - locked. The Yellow Brick Road banner - gone.

"Ms Whitlow is not caring for any children at this time," said Devika Davis, Whitlow's attorney.

Whitlow did not appeal the State Department of Social Services recommendation to revoke her daycare license. A move Whitlow's attorney says was a tough but necessary decision.

"Ms Whitlow decided that was the best course of action for her to take in light of the criminal case that's pending," said Davis.

Whitlow faces a felony child neglect charge. Last month, a 13 month old boy was left unattended for hours in a van used to transport children. Whitlow's son, who's also an employee, was driving that van.

He's charged with involuntary manslaughter in connection to the boy's death.

Although Whitlow surrendered her license she can reapply for a new one in six months --

"At that point they go back to the same inspection process all of the oversight and inquiry necessary and determine whether that person should be licensed," said Steve Benjamin, NBC12 Legal Analyst.

If Whitlow is convicted the Department of Social Services says it's unlikely that Whitlow will be granted a new license to watch children. In a phone conversation today Whitlow says she's not interested right now in monitoring any kids.

"Felony child neglect charges are very serious charges. She's focused on that part of the case," Davis said.

Whitlow is scheduled to appear in court on September 10.

(c) 2009. WWBT, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.