Kent Police arrested a 36-year-old Kent woman for investigation of DUI and abandonment of a dependent person after she reportedly crashed her vehicle after leaving her 1-year-old baby on the porch of her apartment in a car seat.
At about 11 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 27, multiple officers responded to the 24100 block of Russell Road following several 911 calls reporting a single-vehicle crash, according to a Jan. 31 Kent Police statement. Witnesses said a baby might still be inside the car.
Officers arrived and found the woman sitting inside her vehicle. Nobody else was inside the car.
The vehicle reportedly had knocked over three trees, struck a fence and was partially on the curb and sidewalk facing southbound in the northbound lane.
When officers approached her vehicle, the woman started to scream that she had killed her baby, but a baby was not in her vehicle, according to police. Her behavior was reportedly erratic, she was trying to hug officers, and screaming.
Firefighters from Puget Sound Fire were called to assess her injuries and to treat any injuries to the baby that had not yet been found.
For over 20 minutes, officers and firefighters searched for the missing baby, fearing that the child may have been ejected from the vehicle. During this time, an officer found the suspect’s address and asked two officers to go to the woman’s home.
At about 11:35 p.m., an officer advised via radio that the baby had been found on the front porch of the woman’s apartment and was still in her car seat. It was about 50 degrees and raining.
The baby’s father was home, and the investigation revealed that the woman had been driving around with the baby during the afternoon and had stopped to drink at a bar. At some point she left the bar and dropped her 1-year-old off at the doorstep without contacting the father who was home but sleeping.
It is unknown how long the baby was left outside, according to police. The baby was uninjured and was left with the father and family members who arrived to assist.
The woman was medically cleared and transported to the City of Kent jail where she was booked for one count of DUI and one count of abandonment of a dependent person. The officers petitioned for and were granted a search warrant for her blood to determine both her blood/alcohol level and level of drugs in her system. The results were not yet available. Child Protective Services (CPS) was notified regarding the mother’s actions.
“We want to thank the residents who called to report this accident and stayed on scene to give their statements,” according to police. “We also want to acknowledge the quick-thinking actions of our patrol officers in gathering intel to help us locate the baby and working as a team on this chaotic incident, as well as the firefighters who jumped right in to help the officers.
“We could not be more grateful that this little girl was found safe and uninjured. This incident could have easily gone very differently.”