DHS v. Sarah Doe
Project Details
Project Description

Sarah Doe was working as the director of a daycare center when a child left the center and was found walking outside a nearby business. Neither Ms. Doe nor any of her staff knew how the child could have left the center, as the teacher and two aides supervising him all attested that when they last saw him, he was sleeping in his cot during naptime.


Shortly after the incident occurred, the teacher and one of the aides, both sisters, tendered their resignations and recanted their original explanations. They instead alleged that Ms. Doe took the child out of the classroom on the day of the incident. Following an investigation, DHS believed the sisters’ account and sought to hold Ms. Doe responsible for maltreatment.

After a two-day contested hearing, the Administrative Law Judge granted Ms. Doe’s Motion for Directed Verdict, holding that DHS failed to establish by a preponderance of the evidence that Ms. Doe was responsible for the incident. The Judge held that DHS failed to demonstrate that Ms. Doe took the child out of the room or affirmatively assumed the duty to personally supervise him. As a result, the Judge recommended rescinding the Maltreatment Determination against Ms. Doe.