Safford child care provider arrested for child abuse

Photo By Tiffany Bright: A Safford officer speaks to Erin Kidd after her missing toddler was returned from a busy Safford Street. She was arrested and booked into jail on a charge of child abuse. Kidd ran the Kidd Palace child care out of her residence. Authorities say this is the third incident involving three separate misplaced children in less than a year.

By Jon Johnson

SAFFORD – A woman who was operating a reportedly unlicensed childcare business called Kidd Palace LLC out of her residence has been arrested for child abuse after her young daughter was found walking toward a busy street. According to Safford Police Chief Brian Avila, officers had previously responded to the same location multiple times in the past year for children found outside unattended.

Erin Kidd was arrested for child abuse and booked into the Graham County Adult Detention Facility on Thursday, June 29, after her child was found unattended in the area of 5th Avenue and Relation Street. At the time, Kidd was operating a childcare business out of her home at 420 W. Relation St.

On Thursday at about 6:03 p.m., Tiffany Bright and her fiancée Roger Robb were on their way home from running errands when they saw a girl they believed to be less than 2 years old walking down to Relation Street. Bright said the child was wearing a shirt and diaper without any shoes and was watching a movie on a cell phone when she was just steps away from the busy thoroughfare. Bright told the Gila Herald that she and Robb’s hearts dropped when they saw the situation unfolding – and this wasn’t the first time for Bright.

Roughly eight months ago she came across a similar situation when she discovered a female toddler wandering along Relation Street with no adult in sight. At that time, Bright had the child for about 10 minutes until she learned the child was from the Kidd Palace, according to Bright.

Contributed Photo/Courtesy GCSO: Erin Kidd was arrested on a charge of child abuse.

After the first missing child incident, the childcare business shut down – but apparently only for a while. On March 1 a young boy was found wandering the same area by himself. The child was reportedly with police for about an hour as officers went door-to-door until the responsible parties were located – at the Kidd Palace, according to a previous Safford release.

”We’re going to end up with a dead child if this continues,” Bright said. “I’m really frustrated with this whole situation . . .”

The repeated instances of loose children near the street hit home for Bright and her fiancée Robb, who lost his brother at the age of 5 when he was struck by a car while crossing a street.

On Thursday, Bright knew exactly where to take the wandering toddler and spoke up about the situation to Kidd.

When Bright brought the girl back to her home another parent was picking up their child from the daycare at the same time. The parent went into the residence and returned with Erin Kidd. Bright told the Gila Herald that she handed the child over to Kidd and told her it was her second time bringing a lost toddler back to the residence/child care center. Bright said Kidd simply acknowledged the fact with an, “I know” and Bright informed her next act would be to call the police.

“I just really hope that all the parents who were bringing their children to the daycare are aware of what is going on,” Bright said.