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Jaime Brooks Day<br>

Jaime Brooks Day

Teacher testifies in Day's cruelty to a juvenile trial

Last Modified: Wednesday, November 06, 2013 10:11 PM

By Johnathan Manning / American Press

The third-grade teacher of a boy who prosecutors say was intensely abused by his stepmother testified in court Wednesday that when she first met him he was very pale except for dark bruising on his face.

The bones in his hands, neck and face were “pronounced,” said Sheila Devillier, who said she taught the boy in the fall of 2009 before she left in late November on maternity leave. When she returned, he was not enrolled at the school.

Devillier was the last person to testify Wednesday in Jaime Brooks Day’s trial. The 31-year-old Day, 2841 Southern Ridge Road, is standing trial on one count of second-degree cruelty to a juvenile.

The boy, who was 9 years old at the time, was “small but very bright,” Devillier said. He told her he got the bruises trying to ride his father’s bike, “but quickly changed the subject,” she said.

Devillier said that while the class was walking down the hall one of the other children told her the boy was bleeding from his ear. His bruises sent up red flags, and when she met his stepmother at an open house the first night of school she decided to keep a detailed daily log about the boy, she said.

Day was nice to her but perturbed she had taken the boy to the counselor about his bleeding ear, Devillier said. While the boy stood by with his head down, Day told Devillier that he had a personality disorder, was manipulative and a liar, and did things to make others feel sorry for him, the teacher said.

Devillier said that during her time with the boy, she found none of those things to be true. Day did seem to be a concerned parent, Devillier said.

The boy, who turns 13 today, took the stand through video feed Tuesday. He told the court that Day beat him and starved him and told him to tell others he was hurting himself. He said Day forced him to eat his own feces, hung him upside down in the bathroom and had one of her biological children help her Saran wrap him to his bed.

When he was taken to the hospital in March 2010, he was bruised, had a burn mark on his back and ligature marks on his ankles, and at 38 pounds, was so malnourished hair had begun to grown all over his body, Dr. Edgar McCanless testified Tuesday.

The prosecution has called nine people to testify and is expected to call more today. Judge Clayton Davis told the 12-person jury he hoped to turn the case over to them by Tuesday. Court will be closed Monday for Veterans Day.

On the second day of school, the other children told Devillier the boy was eating in the bathroom, she said. He initially lied to her about it, but later came to her during recess and apologized for lying and said he was eating an apple because he was “greedy,” Devillier said.

The boy told his teacher he loved food; Devillier, who was pregnant at the time, responded she loved food, too, she said. “He said he was different. He said he was greedy and all the food had to be locked away or he would sneak in and steal it,” she said.

Devillier said that one Monday when he arrived at school, he wasn’t walking very well and had fresh bruises. One looked like a handprint on his face, she said. At lunch he asked other children for any uneaten food off their plates, she said.

Under cross-examination from defense attorney Walt Sanchez, she said she reported the bruise to the front office and was told child services was called.

Day often sent her notes telling her the boy was only to eat what was in his lunchbox and nothing else — no treats, no food from other children and no food from the cafeteria, Devillier said. Day told her the boy had decided he wanted to bring his own lunch rather than eat in the cafeteria, she said.

There were times when the boy’s lunchbox was empty or only had an apple in it, Devillier said. When she called Day, the boy’s stepmother told her she was tired of defending herself to the school and that he could have eaten the food out of the lunchbox on his way to school or in the bathroom, Devillier said.

Under cross-examination, Devillier said she could not confirm whether he had eaten or disposed of the food before she checked his lunchbox.

As she got closer to maternity leave, she began to ready the students for her departure, she said. The boy began acting up the closer she got to leaving, she said. One day, he crawled under a table and refused to come out, although he did his work under the table, she said.

When the boy soiled his pants one day, she sent him to the office to call for new clothes, she said. New clothes never came, although she was not personally in the office to see whether he made the phone calls, she said. Day said she had not received a phone call, said Holly Fontenot, a counselor at the school.

Devillier said she overheard him at recess one day telling two other students not to be afraid of him, that he had to be in trouble and had to do something to get a bad mark.

After she left on Nov. 20, she said she saw him only once more — when he was picking something up from the school, she said. “He appeared distant, small, fragile, kept his head down and didn’t make much eye contact,” Devillier said. “But he did let me hug him.”

Sanchez presented her with a risk-factors list that said the boy stole, had eating problems, distorted the truth, was withdrawn, had little curiosity, lacked empathy and lacked joy. She said she disagreed with many of those and that she had no idea where the list came from because it had no markings of the Calcasieu Parish School Board.

She said she “wouldn’t agree” that he was defiant; “definitely” disagreed that he lacked empathy; said he was in pain but never seemed joyless; never saw him hurt himself or steal; and that he wasn’t manipulative or an attention seeker. She said she “definitely disagreed” that he had low curiosity because when a science professor from McNeese came to the school, “he loved it.”

The boy missed nearly every Friday and was absent 40 times and had three tardies in the fall of 2009, Fontenot said. She said she was told the boy missed Fridays because he was attending counseling.

Day would call the school four days out of five, Fontenot said, often to tell the school that the boy was only to eat what she packed for him.

Dr. Rachel Chatters, the boy’s doctor from 2005-09, said an “ultimate alarm” went off because the boy’s growth was not progressing.

Posted By: Bree Ana Pettieway On: 11/18/2013

Title: WOW WHERE DO THEY DO THIS AT UNBELIEVABLE!

This is unreal no Child deserves to b treated this way how can any one do that to à Child i need to know where was the FATHER HOW CAN HE ALLOW HIS CHILD TO B TREATED THIS WAY IF YOU ASK ME THE DADDY SHOULD HAVE BEEN CHARGED IF HE KNEW WHAT WAS GOING ON AND DIDNT DO ANYTHING TO STOP THE ACTIONS THAT WAS OCCURING AND i FIND THAT IT TOOK CHILD SERVICES SO LONG TO GET INVOLVED USUSAL THEY ALL IN PEOPLES BUSINESS THANK GOD FOR THE TEACHER THEY SHOULD LOCK THE MOTHER UP AND NEVER LET HER SEE DAY LIGHT AGAIN

Posted By: Khrystyna On: 11/14/2013

Title: REALLY????

Who does this to a child? So many people wonder why other adults take these matters into their own hands. THIS WOULD BE ONE THING THAT I WOULD NEVER TOLERATE.... Not to mention where was the company of DAY? Did people visit that family? Why was NOTHING reported by other family members of Day? How old were her biological children? Why did Day's children not tell someone what was going on in that home... I HOPE she is turned out into the general population of the jail she is serving time in....THEN LETS SEE WHAT SHE THINKS ABOUT ABUSE.... I am sure once this story hits that prison they will show her... AM PRAYING GOD'S WILL BE DONE...

Posted By: JeanSikes On: 11/8/2013

Title: Teacher

Thank God For this teacher This is one of sadist thing I have ever read. Hope they get what they the same thing when they go to jail.

Posted By: Granny On: 11/7/2013

Title: Child Services

What took child services soooo long to get involved?? They are usually in everybody's business long before this and most of the time they make up their own stories. I think this department should be investigated and starting at the bottom, and all personnel should be replaced with honest to goodness workers!! If you don't believe me, wait until they get into "Your Business". Most of them should be in the same cell with Day and as they say, "Throw Away The Key".

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Posted By: Patricia On: 11/7/2013

Title: Unhuman

This is most disturbing and unbelievable that this monster of a human being was able to get away with this for so long!!
She needs to be punished with the max,{which hopefully is life in prison},so there is no chance of ever doing this to any child again!! This just makes me so sick that that poor innocent child had to suffer such abuse! Where was Dad through all this??? SAD!!!

Posted By: Kim On: 11/7/2013

Title: Unbelievable

This story brought tears to my eyes and I cannot imagine what kind of monster would do that to another human being, much less a child... I am thankful for this teacher who obviously cared for the boy and took interest in him. I am however a little bothered that the "ultimate alarm" only went off because his growth wasn't progressing... what about the bruises and the mom not sending food in his lunch box. They need to lock her up and throw away the key!
I'd like more info on where the father was and what he was doing about this!

I'd like more info on where the father was and what he was doing about this!" />

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