A California 32-year-old mother have been arrested by the police following video evidence where she allegedly left her 2-year-old daughter in a grocery store alone last weekend with no plans to return.
The two-year-old child, identified only as Danica, was found alone but unharmed at a shop in the mall. Police were notified of the incident, after which they launched a search for her mother.
Chiengkham Vilaysane was taken into custody two days after she took the little girl to a Food 4 Less in Riverside, California, on Sunday — and didn’t look for the toddler when she wandered off, Riverside police claim in a statement.
When a worried shopper tried to reunite Vilaysane, 31, with her daughter, she allegedly replied, “Oh, just leave her,” according to authorities.
However, after reviewing CCTV footage, police came to the conclusion that the mother, had deliberately abandoned her daughter.
“The small child was able to identify the woman as her ‘mommy’ when she was shown a photo from the surveillance footage,” police said, noting that the girl had not been reported missing.
A search ensued for the girl’s mother, after officers responded to a report of a “found child” at the grocery store.
The surveillance footage released by the police showed Vilaysane entering the mall with her daughter in tow but later leaving alone after completing her shopping, a local bank employee later recognized her from media reports and contacted authorities.
Vilaysane was arrested on Tuesday, and booked into the Robert Presley Detention Center in California on suspicion of child neglect and child endangerment, jail records show.
She has not yet been officially charged and is expected to appear in court on Thursday. It was not immediately clear if she has retained an attorney.
Authorities have also learned that Vilaysane has another child, who is “safe and with family.”
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