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Published September 26, 2009, 11:42 AM

VOELLER FOUND GUILTY ON 2 COUNTS OF CHILD ABUSE

A jury has found a Rugby woman guilty on 2 of 8 counts of child abuse or neglect. Lori Voeller was found not guilty on 6 of the counts.

By: Renee Chmiel, WDAZ

A jury has found a Rugby woman guilty on 2 of 8 counts of child abuse or neglect.

Lori Voeller was found not guilty on 6 of the counts.

Parents cried in the courtroom as the jury returned their verdict this morning just before noon. They deliberated 5 hours Friday night, and went home at nine o'clock. The reconvened this morning at nine and took two and a half more hours to reach their verdict.

During a five day trial, authorities made the case that 48-year-old Lori Ann Voeller abused children at the daycare she ran in her Rugby home.

Special Agent Craig Zachmeier, who interviewed Voeller before she was arrested, asked her about a 2-year-old boy who left her daycare with bruises all over his face.

He said it looked like someone had squeezed his face.

Zachmeier said Voeller told him she didn't think she'd "done it that hard."

The jury also heard testimony from Kristen Bohl, a friend of Voeller's daughter who often visited the family's home.

"Lori kind of shoved the food in her mouth and she still wouldn't eat so Lori hit her across the head and kind of made the high chair move," Bohl testified.

Voeller's defense team said Voeller has been a daycare provider for 20 years and has never faced allegations like this.

The case started when authorities received a phone call about a year ago reporting the child abuse allegations. The children Voeller was accused of abusing ranged in age from four months to five years old.

Each of the charges were Class B Felonies. Voeller now faces up to 10 years in prison for each of the two counts of child abuse or neglect.

A sentencing date was not set.

Voeller is confined to her home until she is sentenced.

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