Civil trial delayed for former Orlando VPK teacher charged with sexual battery

Civil trial delayed until after criminal trial in July

By Mark Lehman - Reporter

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - A hearing was held Thursday for a former Baldwin Park day care worker accused of sexually abusing children.

Jayrico Jayrice Hamilton, 26, was a VPK teacher at Bright Horizons Child Care and Learning Center. In February, he was charged with sexual battery on a victim under 12, lewd or lascivious molestation, lewd or lascivious conduct and child abuse.

At Thursday's hearing, Circuit Judge Keith Carsten heard a motion from Hamilton who requested a civil case against him be put on hold until his criminal trial, which is scheduled for July, is complete.

Carsten granted the request and ordered a four-month delay in the civil case.

The order came a day after video showing an interview between Hamilton and Orlando police detectives was released.

In the nearly hourlong interview, a detective asked about Hamilton's relationships with certain students at the day care.

"Is there a reason they're making accusations about you?" the detective asked.

"I have no idea," Hamilton said.

Bright Horizon's Daycare first came under fire in June 2017 when allegations surfaced that three preschool-age children had been sexually abused by Hamilton.

A lawsuit filed by the parents of a 4-year-old boy alleges that an employee at the VPK school sexually abused the boy.

A teacher assigned to the accused employee's classroom also reported concerns that he was "grooming" a boy for sexual abuse, according to the lawsuit.

The lawyer for the family told News 6 in June that the suspected employee follows at least 100 toddler-aged Instagram models and his account is public. If Bright Horizons had conducted a background check and searched his social media accounts, this would have been apparent to them, according to the lawsuit.

In November, the Department of Children and Families ordered the child care facility to pay $700 in fines, among other things, as part of a lawsuit settlement stemming from allegations of sexual abuse at the day care. The pre-school's license was also suspended for 90 days.

DCF officials said the department's investigation found that the day care did not perform a proper background check before hiring the employee last year and that administrators should have heeded warnings from other employees about the man's inappropriate behavior.

Bright Horizons reached a settlement agreement with DCF while still denying the allegations made in the lawsuit.

Hamilton is being held without bond in the Orange County jail.  If his criminal case is delayed longer than four months, the attorney representing the plaintiff in his civil case can request the judge resume the civil proceedings.

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