Three arrested on child cruelty charges in investigation of child care facility that serves Mississippi River communities

Published 6:39 am Friday, October 22, 2021

A child care facility that serves parents in two Mississippi River communities has been closed in a child cruelty investigation that has resulted in the arrest of three people.

Three women have been arrested in connection with an ongoing child cruelty investigation at Noah’s Ark Christian Childcare which serves parents in Natchez and the neighboring community of Vidalia, Louisiana.

Law enforcement officials said an investigation of the daycare, located at 603 Gregory St. in Vidalia, began late last week following a complaint of suspected child abuse.

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During the course of the investigation, Louisiana State Police became involved.

Casey Wallace, public information officer for Louisiana State Police Region E., said Thursday that Bridget K. Delaughter, 33, had been arrested on four counts cruelty to a juvenile as an ongoing investigation continues.

She and Julianne Perales, 26, who had been arrested on 11 counts of cruelty to a juvenile Tuesday, were both employees at the daycare center, Wallace confirmed.

Jail records also show that on Friday, Concordia Parish Sheriff’s Office arrested Taylor Ragonesi, 19, on three counts of cruelty to a juvenile prior to LSP beginning their investigation.

Delaughter is detained on a $40,000 bond; Perales on a $110,000 bond; and Ragonesi on a $45,000 bond at the Concordia Parish Jail, according to jail records.

Wallace said the daycare has been closed for this investigation.

He added that he could not give further details about the case because it is ongoing.

“As far as what has taken place, we cannot disclose any of that until we’re done with (this investigation),” he said.

He said more arrests and charges are possible.

Owners of the daycare could not be reached for comment.