ELYRIA — Heather Koon allegedly molested an 18-month old girl on her first day of work at Country Day School in Amherst, according to a lawsuit filed Monday by the mother of the victim.
Koon began working for the school May 13, 2013, and was allowed to work unsupervised that same day, giving her an opportunity to photograph and molest the girl, the lawsuit said. The girl was photographed again by Koon on May 22, 2013, according to the lawsuit.
Koon is facing life in prison if convicted of the charges against her, which center on allegations she molested children in her care at Country Day and at ABC Kidz, the Elyria day care center where she worked before the Amherst school hired her.
Prosecutors have said they believe Koon took images of her molesting several children at the day cares at the behest of her fiancé, convicted sex offender James Osborne, who also faces charges in the case.
Lorain County sheriff’s deputies discovered the images while examining an iPhone and laptop computer seized when they arrested Osborne Sept. 26 for allegedly not living at the Oberlin address where he was registered.
Koon was arrested days later after deputies confirmed with several parents their children were pictured in the electronic images and videos.
Osborne has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity in the case. His attorney, Mike Duff, has said Osborne hears voices and that Koon acted alone when she sexually abused the children.
Koon’s attorney, Dan Wightman, has said his client’s relationship with Osborne will be an important part of the case because of the control he exercised over her.
The lawsuit accuses Koon of inflicting severe emotional distress and civil assault and battery.
Country Day is accused of negligence, including negligent supervision for allowing her to work with children alone on her first day on the job.
A woman identifying herself as management at Country Day declined to comment on the lawsuit. The day care’s owner previously said the school completed a background check on Koon before hiring her and turned up no criminal record.
Koon and ABC Kidz were sued last year in a separate lawsuit by the mother of another alleged victim in the case.