State Pays Nearly $2 Million to All Hours Daycare Victims
March 21, 2017
(Seattle, WA) — Four children sexually assaulted at a Marysville daycare have settled a lawsuit with the State of Washington for nearly $2 million. The $1.87 million settlement is believed to be one of the largest ever paid by the State’s Department of Early Learning. The suit accused the State agency of failing to properly investigate the personal and work history of the owner, Anne Ladale Moore, in Idaho before granting her a daycare license in Washington. Law enforcement investigators received reports that Moore’s 18 year-old son, Dakota Wilson, had been sexually assaulting children in Moore’s All Hours Daycare, and the daycare shut its doors soon after. In September 2011, Snohomish County prosecutors charged Wilson with two counts of first degree child molestation and one count of first degree child rape. He ultimately pleaded guilty to lesser charges of assault.
According to the lawsuit, Wilson had been accused of sexually abusing daycare children at Moore’s previous daycare in Idaho back in 2004. Other abuse and neglect allegations against Moore’s daycare were also substantiated by Idaho CPS investigators. Moore closed the business in Boise and then moved across the border, eventually setting up All Hours Daycare in Snohomish County in 2008.
“Moore’s daycare in Idaho had major violations which should have sent up unmistakable red flags and prevented All Hours Daycare from ever opening in this state,” said one of the children’s attorney’s, Mike Pfau of Pfau Cochran Vertetis Amala PLLC. Pfau said that all of the Idaho records detailing a list of various problems with Moore’s business including Wilson’s past sexual abuse were available to the Department of Early Learning employees had they only followed up. “Washington licensors really dropped the ball,” Pfau said.
The lawsuit also alleged that in addition to negligently licensing the daycare, the State failed to properly investigate a number of complaints in Washington about the All Hours facility. Complaints of improperly restraining children, inadequate supervision, and inappropriate behaviors in Moore’s daycare went largely unaddressed by State licensors. Plaintiffs’ attorney Brad Fulton of Carter & Fulton said that in one instance, Moore’s ex-husband, who was listed as one of All Hours’ child care providers, went into profanity-laced tirades against daycare children, prompting parents to complain.
“Licensors were well aware that All Hours had problems,” Fulton said. “But over a nearly four-year period not one licensor looked deeply enough into the source to either put protective measures in place for the kids attending the daycare or put a stop to the business altogether.”
The 24-hour facility first made news as the recipient of the most state subsidy payments of any daycare in Washington. At one point, Moore received nearly a quarter-million dollars to provide care for children whose parents needed care in off hours, including overnight.
“State officials knew that the kids who attended All Hours Daycare depended on the Department of Early Learning to properly monitor and provide oversight, especially since the daycare was open all the time with limited staff and received so many state dollars every year,” said attorney Darrell Cochran, who also represented the abused children and their families. “Despite knowing the department’s watchful eye was an absolute necessity, daycare licensors failed to act when new complaints against All Hours Daycare came into the office,” Cochran said.
The settlement with the State still has to be approved by a Snohomish County judge, because it involves minors. Pfau said he expects that process to be completed sometime in April.