Daycare sex assault charges dropped

Counts stayed against husband of Dragonfly operator

The husband of a woman who ran a Maple Ridge daycare is no longer facing charges for sexually assaulting a young girl.

A trial for Edgar Hernandez was set to begin Monday, but did not proceed as charges were stayed two months earlier.

Hernandez, 48, faced one count each of sexual interference and sexual assault in connection with an alleged offence that took place around Dec. 1, 2009.

Police allege Hernandez touched a young girl inappropriately at Dragonfly Daycare, operated out of his Maple Ridge home.

Neil MacKenzie, a spokesman for B.C.’s Criminal Justice branch, confirmed the charges were stayed Sept. 27 after a review of the file by a Crown prosecutor.

“The Crown’s charge assessment standard for continuing the prosecution was no longer met in the case,” he explained.

As part of the review, Crown took into account both the anticipated evidence of potential Crown and defence witnesses, as well as potential defence evidence.

“We concluded that Crown would not be able to prove that the accused was guilty of the alleged offences,” MacKenzie said.

Dragonfly Daycare was run by Hernandez’s wife, Flavia Hernandez-Santos, but is no longer in operation.

After Hernandez was charged with sexual assault, the Fraser Health Authority put a health and safety plan in place that banned him from being at the daycare during its hours of operation.

Hernandez violated the conditions and the daycare was forced to close last May.

Fraser Health spokesperson Tasleem Juma said the woman who operated the daycare voluntarily surrendered her license after that breach.

She hasn’t applied for a license since and is currently not registered as a daycare operator with Fraser Health.

If she wants to open another daycare, Hernandez-Santos will have to go through the same screening process as other applicants.

Juma said that screening process includes background checks and also investigates history if a person has operated a daycare centre before.

“It’s a very rigorous process,” she assured.

 

Stay of proceedings

The effect of a stay of proceedings has been described as putting a charge in a legal limbo. That is, the Crown may proceed on the same charge any time within 12 months by giving notice of recommencement to the clerk of the court.

If no such notice is given within one year, “the proceedings shall be deemed never to have been commenced”.

 

– with files from the BCCLA

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Caitlin Toews, operations director of The Asante Centre, says more supports are needed for people with FASD. (Special to The News)
More supports ‘urgently’ needed for those living with FASD

Wait-lists for supports at Maple Ridge centre can mean the difference between life and death

Rich Goulet in 2015. (THE NEWS/files)
STM renames Chancellor Tournament for Rich Goulet

Iconic Pitt Meadows coach memorialized by the high school where he started

Scenes Gerald Bowers sees on his daily walks downtown. (Gerald Bowers/Special to The News)
Maple Ridge resident fed up of downtown garbage and vandalism

Downtown Maple Ridge BIA say graffiti incidents down

Members of UPlan have a Zoom meeting to discuss youth mental health in Maple Ridge - Pitt Meadows. (Zoom screenshot - Special to the News)
Student group wants to bring awareness to youth mental health

UPlan members discuss some of the challenges facing young people during the pandemic

FILE – NDP Leader John Horgan, right, and local candidate Mike Farnworth greet one another with an elbow bump during a campaign stop in Coquitlam, B.C., on Friday, September 25, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. won’t be using random individual road stops to enforce travel rules: Safety Minister

Minister Mike Farnworth says travel checks only being considered at major highway junctions, ferry ports

Westbound Highway 1 traffic near Herrling Island is backed up a long way following a vehicle incident. (Photo/Trish Dunbar)
Pedestrian killed in crash near Agassiz

Woman in her 50s struck by moving van

FILE – Health-care workers wave to people clapping and yelling thank you to the frontline workers during the 7 p.m.-tribute outside the Lions Gate Hospital in North Vancouver, B.C. Wednesday, April 8, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. nurses issue plea for all to follow health orders as hospitalizations spike

Nurses worried about strain COVID-19 is having on hospital capacity, care

University of Victoria rowing coach Barney Williams is photographed in the stands during the Greater Victoria Invitational at CARSA Performance Gym at the University of Victoria in Victoria, B.C., on Friday, November 29, 2019. The University of Victoria says Williams has resigned effective immediately. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito)
University of Victoria women’s rowing coach resigns by mutual agreement

Lawsuit filed last summer accused Barney Williams of verbal abuse

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Former B.C. premier Christy Clark. (Black Press Media files)
Former B.C. premier to testify at money laundering hearing today

Attorney General David Eby has been added to the witness list as well

Selina Robinson is shown in Coquitlam, B.C., on Friday November 17, 2017. British Columbia’s finance minister says her professional training as a family therapist helped her develop the New Democrat government’s first budget during the COVID-19 pandemic, which she will table Tuesday. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. to table budget that’s expected to deal with COVID-19 pandemic and beyond

Robinson released a fiscal update last December that said the impact of the pandemic on B.C.’s economy was uncertain

Most Read