Daycare worker transports child in trunk of her car

by Linda Brill

The State of Washington has pulled the license of daycare operator Linda Clarke after she admitted putting a four-year-old child in the trunk of her car and driving for nearly half a mile.

The mother of four-year-old Nicholas Wickstrom is understandably outraged.

"He said it was dark. He was scared and he heard music playing. I don't know if he was crying loud and she had the music up so she wouldn't hear it. I have no idea. I don't see her as that kind of person," said Linda Hooper.

Nicholas and some other children were inside the Chrysler Concorde in their car seats.

Clarke was driving them to pick up other children at the bus stop when Nicholas started acting up.

"Apparently, the four-year-old had bitten another child who was in the car seated next to him, and that he had been kicking the seat of the daycare provider, and when she got out to open the door to figure out how she was going to resolve the issue, apparently the four-year-old attempted to close the door on her hand," said Kitsap County Sheriff's deputy Scott Wilson.

Clarke admitted to police she became frustrated and put Nicholas in the trunk.

It's not clear if she actually closed the trunk lid.

She drove for nearly a half-mile at five miles per hour.

She told Nicholas' mother what she had done.

"If she would have slammed her brakes on for a cat or something else, he could have hit his head on something, or exhaust fumes. Plus the trauma of being put in a trunk when you're being punished," said Hooper.

On Wednesday the state suspended the daycare's license and the Kitsap County Prosecutor's Office is now looking at the case.

Clarke could face reckless endangerment charges.