An unlicensed day camp near Atlanta where a 5-year-old tragically drowned last week has been ordered to close, a state agency confirmed Monday afternoon.
"Camp Cricket Summer Day Camp at Cochran Mill Park was operating without a license or exemption from licensing. Our agency is issuing a cease and desist order for the program," Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning spokesman Reg Griffin said in a statement.
The child's heartbroken parents were grief-stricken Monday as they talked about their son's death.
"No one should ever have to go through this," Benjamin Hosch's mother said with tears streaming down her face.
Mr. and Mrs. Hosch gathered with their attorneys at a news conference Monday morning, where the family spoke for the first time since their son's tragic death.
"I am broken," Mrs. Hosch said.
According to the family's lawyer, Benjamin Hosch drowned on Friday while attending Camp Cricket at Cochran Mill Nature Center, and his parents want to know how something like this could happen.
The family's attorney said children attending the day camp were taken to a nearby waterfall and rock ledge to eat their lunch on Friday, and that's when investigators told the Hoschs the kids were allowed to slide on the waterfall and swim.
Benjamin's parents said their son couldn't swim and he was missing for more than 45 minutes before he was found submerged in a small pond.
The Hoschs said they would have never allowed their son to slide on a waterfall or swim without his life jacket, and want to know why the camp didn't get their permission beforehand. His parents are now filing a lawsuit against "all responsible parties."
Late Monday afternoon, state officials announced they have launched an investigation:
"Camp Cricket Summer Day Camp at Cochran Mill Park is an unlicensed program that was unknown to the State of Georgia until the reporting of this incident today. We are currently investigating this incident. Georgia law allows for situations where a child care service can be exempt from state licensing requirements based on the ages of children, duration of the program, hours of operation, specific activities, or where services are offered free of charge. It appears that Camp Cricket was neither licensed nor had it applied for and received exempt status from the state."