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Plum day care workers plead no contest to child abuse

| Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2013, 2:44 p.m.

An Allegheny County judge sentenced two former workers from the now-closed Genesis Child Care Center in Plum to probation but imposed no sentence on a third worker.

All three pleaded no contest to misdemeanor charges tied to child abuse, the District Attorney's Office said.

Plum police charged Eileen Marie Andrews, 45, of Verona with assaulting children.

They charged Angela Marie Russo, 50, of Plum and Terry Lynn Bachner, 43, of Murrysville with failing to report the abuse.

Allegheny County Common Pleas Judge Beth Lazarra on Feb. 1. sentenced Andrews to six months of probation on a charge of simple assault on a victim under the age of 12.

“It was very difficult for all parties concerned,” said Duke George, Andrews' attorney, “but it's over now and everybody is going to move on with their lives.”

Lazarra sentenced Russo to three months of probation for failing to report the abuse.

Bachner must pay court costs, said Mike Witherel, Bachner's attorney.

Robert Crisanti, Russo's attorney, said his client will seek to expunge her record after she completes probation.

The prosecution agreed not to oppose it.

Pittsburgh East Community Church closed the center in April when reports of the abuse surfaced, and a church spokeswoman said it will remain closed.

“Our hearts and our prayers go out to the children, families and employees of the Genesis Child Care Center who were affected by the incidents that led to the closing of the center in April 2012,” Pittsburgh East Community Church senior Pastor Lee Kricher said.

“Even though the day care is closed, we maintain our strong commitment to make a positive difference in the lives of the hundreds of children who attend the Pittsburgh East Community Church with their families every weekend.”

Brian Bowling is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-325-4301 or bbowling@tribweb.com.

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