Symonds Receives Five-Month Prison Sentence for Causing Grievous Bodily Harm to Toddler

When Christina Belboda went to pick her son up from Heavenly Blessings Nursery School around four years ago, he was completely unresponsive after having received a traumatic head injury at the school. Her son, whose name cannot be published, had to be flown overseas for treatment of those injuries.

“ He was flown out to Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami and had to undergo four hours of brain surgery to reduce swelling and remove the clot,” Ms. Belboda said. “ We were in Miami for about one month, but it initially appeared upon returning to Bermuda that he sustained a limp in his leg, which was sorted out through physical therapy.”

The case against who was responsible for causing her son’s head injury was initially closed, but was reopened due to her determination and diligence. A staff member at the nursery gave a statement to the police against the then-owner of the nursery, Vernesha Symonds.

The investigation has been ongoing since that time and concluded yesterday morning, with Ms. Symonds being sentenced in Magistrate’s Court.

The Worshipful Magistrate Khamisi Tokunbo sentenced Ms. Symonds to five months imprisonment suspended for two-years. She was also placed on the child abuse registry.

With no obvious signs of any medical problems as a result of the incident, Ms. Belboda’s son is doing very well and living a normal little kid’s life.

She urges anyone who has children in their care to do the right thing.
“ Children are very vulnerable and if something happens to them intentionally or by accident, having the proper policies and procedures in place [are important],” she said.

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