STOCKTON – Friends and family of the Stockton toddler, who died after visiting the dentist, plans to gather at the Children’s Dental Surgery Center demanding justice.
On Friday, administrators closed down the facility after receiving numerous death threats following the death of a three-year-old girl who was having a dental procedure done.
It all happened Monday morning, about thirty minutes after the toddler’s parents brought her in to the office.
Parents say they followed all the instructions given to them by the staff here at the children’s dental surgery center and are still confused as to how their little girl died.
Araceli Avila and Jose Hernandez say their 3-year-old daughter, Daleyza was a very active little girl. She was a friendly toddler who was playing just minutes before she was called in to see the dentist.
“I remember when I brought her here. She got out of the car fine. She was walking and very happy,” said Avila.
Daleyza was sent to the center on a referral to get work on her top and bottom molars. The toddler was also getting a tooth removed and was supposed to get two crowns, but her mother says she never made it past the anesthesia.
“She was a vivacious little girl. She loved mini-mouse, she loved to eat. In fact, when she was here she was telling me momma, I’m hungry and she told her no you can’t eat yet,” said relative, Yolanda Dawson.
The center is not a dentist’s office, but an ambulatory surgery facility licensed by the state. Administrators say most of the staff is bilingual and speak both English and Spanish. They have treated tens of thousands of young patients.
“We only treat patients here with an anesthesiologist and a dentist separately, with both of them here at the same time. We do not do what we call single operator where one dentist does the anesthesia and the dentistry at the same time. We are fully equipped like a small hospital,” said David Thompson, administrator for the Children’s Dental Surgery Center.
The toddler’s mother says an ambulance arrived at the center minutes after nurses took her daughter to get started on her procedure. Daleyza was taken to St. Joseph’s Medical Center where she later died. The Stockton Police department and the California Dental Board are investigating the matter.
“It’s a terrible tragedy honestly, for the family. Our thoughts and prayers are really for the family right now,” said Thompson.
The administrator says the death threats he received was aimed at staff members and the building. He plans to re-open the center after he can reassure the safety of all patients and staff members.
Many members of the community plan to gathered Friday at 8 pm, at the center for a vigil. A go-fund-me page has also been set up to help with funeral services.