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Suburban Phoenix preschool worker pleads not guilty to abuse

MESA, Ariz. -- An employee at a Mesa preschool accused of abuse after police found a 2-year-old girl restrained in a sleeping area has pleaded not guilty.

Maricopa County prosecutors said 22-year-old Lauren Miller entered her plea Monday. Her next court date is Dec. 18.

Miller was arrested Oct. 17 on suspicion of two counts of child abuse and two counts of unlawful imprisonment.

She's suspected of wrapping the child in a blanket and tying the ends of the cloth so tightly that the child couldn't move.

A co-worker at the Cholla Montessori child care facility took photos of the tied-up child and sent them to Mesa police.

Authorities said the toddler didn't need medical attention and was turned over to her parents.

The facility is licensed by the Arizona Department of Health Services.

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