2 Tulsa County Deputies On Paid Leave After Incident At Sand Springs Daycare

Friday, May 22nd 2020, 10:18 pm

SAND SPRINGS, Okla. - Two Tulsa County deputies are on paid administrative leave after an incident at a Sand Springs daycare.

The daycare owner said the deputies did not do enough after a man nearly drove his truck into a fence, while children were playing on the other side.

The sheriff's office is calling what happened "deeply troubling."

The owner of the daycare said Sheriff Vic Regalado visited her this morning and personally apologized for what happened.

But the owner wants to see the man in the video, and the deputies, held accountable.

Surveillance video shows the parking lot at Ms. Mandi's Preschool & Early Learning Center, where owner Mandi Bradford said a man in a red truck nearly hit the fence, with children playing on the other side.

"We didn't know what was going on -- if it was a medical condition, anything,” she said.

Bradford said the man repeatedly backs up and goes forward again. She said she is thankful he wasn't going faster and that he was hitting a railroad tie in front of the fence.

Adults can be seen rushing to grab the children and bring them inside.

"Our teachers did an amazing job and got every single kid inside, really, really quickly,” Bradford said.

They called 911, and Tulsa County deputies showed up.

"There was liquor that we actually witnessed them pouring out, there was beer that we witnessed them pouring out,” Bradford said. "I asked one of the officers if he was drunk, and he said, 'Yes, he's drunk.'"

While the children, ages one to four, were all inside, Bradford said the deputies took several things out of his truck.

"To my understanding, they pulled out a machete and they pulled out a handgun and a hammer from the front of his truck,” Bradford said.

Bradford said the deputies took handcuffs off the man and he walked away from the scene.

"The officers that responded, I don't feel like they did their job. I don't feel like they took it seriously. They never even asked me about the children. They never showed any type of concern that there were kids," Bradford said.

The sheriff's office released the following statement:

The Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office was made aware of this incident late yesterday. Sheriff Regalado personally met with the owner of the daycare this morning to discuss their mutual concerns over what occurred. Two deputies who responded to the call at the daycare center on Thursday have now been placed on paid administrative leave.

TCSO Communications Director, Casey Roebuck said, “While we find this incident deeply troubling, both deputies are entitled to due process. This incident is under investigation by our Internal Affairs Division. We will await the outcome of that investigation to determine the next steps in the disciplinary process.”

Bradford said the man came back later, but a teacher’s husband asked to the man to leave and he did.

"We were very, very lucky that nothing worse happened,” Bradford said.

The sheriff's office said it cannot release the deputies' names while the investigation is ongoing.

It would not confirm whether there is any effort to arrest the man in the video.