Yoselyn Ortega, the nanny suspected of stabbing two children in her care to death on Thursday, was treated “like family” by her employers, said Karen Krim, the children’s grandmother.
“They just bent over backwards being nice to this woman,” said Karen Krim, whose son Kevin is a Senior Vice President and General Manager at CNBC. Kevin Krim was reportedly heading home from a business trip when the tragedy took place. He was greeted by police officers at the airport, who informed him of the grim news.
“My daughter-in-law, if she thought there was anything wrong, she would have never left the two with her. This had to be something simmering inside this woman. Obviously, she went insane,” Krim said to the New York Daily News on Friday.
“We’re just having a really, really hard time here,” she added. “We’re all falling apart ... It’s the worst nightmare any parent could ever have.”
Ortega was reportedly due to meet Marina Krim and pick up her daughter Nessie for a dance lesson, on Thursday afternoon when she failed to show up. Suspicious, Krim headed home to her apartment building, La Rochelle, on 75th street, to see what the holdup was but found it empty. She went downstairs to the lobby, and asked the doorman if he had seen Ortega leave with her other two children, but he hadn’t. At around 5:34 p.m., Krim headed upstairs again, said Police Commissioner Ray Kelly in a briefing.
When Krim entered the apartment, she reportedly found the lights off and no sign of any of the children or the nanny. She then walked into the bathroom and flipped on the lights, which is when she found her two children unconscious in the bathtub and Ortega lying on the floor.
Charlotte Friedman, a neighbor of the Krims' who lives on the building’s seventh floor, said that she was heading out of her apartment when she heard Marina’s screams. When she walked downstairs into the lobby, she found Krim holding Nessie in her arms. Friedman had seen the other two children, Lucia, 6, and Leo, 2, just a half an hour earlier and said they had been in excellent spirits.
“The kids looked normal. The nanny looked normal,” said Friedman, who added that Ortega had seemed cold to her. “She had a poker face. There was no indication that something like this was going to happen.”
“Kevin told me that she was a nice girl,” said Karen Krim. “Our poor son. He was such a wonderful father.”
Krim said that Ortega had been working for Kevin and Marina for three years. Whenever they took their children on vacation, they would purchase a flight back to the Dominican Republic for Ortega. “They paid for her to be with her family.”