Baby Mac case: Vancouver daycare operator sentenced news
The operator of the unlicensed East Vancouver daycare where 16-month-old Macallan Saini died five years ago has been handed a 20-month jail sentence.
Susy Yasmine Saad
learned her fate in B.C. Supreme Court Monday, months after pleading guilty to failing to provide the necessaries of life to nine children – including the toddler known as Baby
The names of the other eight children are protected by a publication ban.
The court heard Saad left Baby Mac alone in a playpen on Jan. 18, 2017, and returned to
find him unconscious with a cord around his neck.
Authorities later learned Saad had been caring for too many children at the time of the incident, including five who were
under the age of 18 months. Under B.C. law, unlicensed daycare operators are only allowed to care for a maximum of two children other than their own, with few exceptions.
Justice Catherine Wedge said Saad was aware of the rules but made a conscious decision not to follow them in order to generate more income for her daycare.
Saad admitted to
misleading Baby Mac's parents, Chris Saini and Shelly Sheppard, among others about how many children she was looking after. The judge called her a "scheming and dishonest person
who knowingly placed young children at risk every day they attended the daycare."
After the sentence was handed down, Saini and Sheppard released a statement describing the
punishment as a "minute and trivial measure of justice for Mac."
"No punishment will ever bring our sweet boy back to us," they said. "His life and future was stolen from
him. He will never get to score a goal in soccer. Have a sleepover with friends. Learn to clean a fish. Experience the thrill of a first kiss. Develop his intellect and apply it to
a career. Have children and grow old with his family. All this, and so much more, will never happen for Mac. This makes us sad beyond words can describe."
"Please take the
time and make the effort to appreciate and love the people in your life. Young and old. This is an ongoing and never ending exercise," they added.
Prosecutors had recommended
a two-year sentence for Saad, arguing that would send a message that could deter others and potentially prevent similar tragedies. The defence asked for a one-year conditional
sentence that would have been served in the community.
Sharon Gregson of the Coalition of Childcare Advocates said it's her hope that Saad is never able to "care for
anybody's children ever again."
"When a person like this individual is deliberately being deceitful and greedy and putting money ahead of the care and wellbeing of children,