British Columbia

Owners of home where toddler died say they didn't know it was being used as a daycare

In a response to a lawsuit filed by the toddler's parents, the homeowners say they were not aware a daycare was operating in the unit they rented out Yasmine Saad.

The homeowners responded to a civil lawsuit filed by the toddler's parents

Macallan Wayne Saini died on Jan. 18, 2017 at the unlicensed Olive Branch Daycare in Vancouver. (Shelly Sheppard)

The owners of the home where a toddler died in 2017, have denied responsibility for the child's death.

In response to a lawsuit filed by the parents of Macallan Wayne Saini, the homeowners, Karen Kruse and Peter Scott, say they were not aware a daycare was operating out of their residence.

The 16-month-old toddler died Jan. 18, 2017 at the unlicensed Olive Branch Daycare on Kitchener Street in Vancouver. 

In 2018, the child's parents filed a suit alleging the daycare operator and the owners of the home were negligent.

The suit names Vancouver Coastal Health, the Ministry of Children and Family Development, the owners of the home and the daycare operator.

In court documents, the toddler's mother, Shelley Sheppard, said she "understands that Mac Saini had been left unattended and had choked on an electrical cord causing his death."

In their response to the parent's suit, the homeowners acknowledge renting out the home to daycare operator Yasmine Saad for a 12-month period starting on Oct. 1, 2016.

They filed the response to the parents' civil claim on Jan. 23, 2019.

In their response, the homeowners claim the they did nothing to cause or contribute to the "tragic and unexpected event that occurred."

They also claim that the residence and surrounding premises were properly maintained and safe for anyone entering. 

Both Saad and the Ministry of Children and Family Development, which is also named in the parents' lawsuit, have yet to file a response. 

Vancouver Coastal Health responded to the civil claim on Dec. 6, 2018, denying any negligence on its part. 

The allegations have not been proven in court.

About the Author

Tina Lovgreen

Video Journalist

Tina is a Video Journalist with CBC Vancouver. Send her an email at tina.lovgreen@cbc.ca