Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

July 12, 2013

Child nearly struck wandering in road

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — CAMBRIA — A woman faces child endangerment charges after her toddler almost wandered into the road and was nearly struck by a passing vehicle Thursday afternoon.

Jacqueline N. Morris, 23, 5158 Upper Mountain Road was charged following an investigation by the Niagara County Sheriff's Office.

According to a sheriff's report, deputies were dispatched to Upper Mountain Road to investigate a report of a child crawling in the roadway.

When they arrived, a woman told them she and her husband were driving eastbound on Upper Mountain Road, and she saw what she believed to be a child crawling into the roadway. She alerted her husband, who was driving at the time, and he narrowly avoided hitting the child.

The couple stopped a short distance up the road, and the wife got out and grabbed the child from the roadway because there were several dump trucks approaching. After bringing the child to safety, she went to her friend's house across the street and called 911.

A Sheriff''s office deputy and sergeant walked across the street to 5158 Upper Mountain Road, where they saw Morris walk out of the apartment wearing a bath towel.

"The woman did not appear to be upset or worried, so we asked if she was missing a child," the reporting officer wrote. "She said yes, and we advised her that the child was across the street and safe. We then advised her to get dressed."

As Morris got dressed, the sergeant spoke to her older child, who said that he opened the door so he could play outside, and that was when the younger child must have gotten out.

While the sergeant was with the boy, the deputy spoke to the neighbors where the couple took the toddler. The neighbors told the deputy that the woman always leaves her two young children unattended to play out side, and they are too young for that.

Once Morris was dressed, patrol began to question her on the situation. She stated that she just took a shower and was getting ready to go to court for a previous incident where she was a victim. She was then told about the traffic incident involving her child and that she was going to be charged with endangering the welfare of a child.

The deputy reported that Morris already had child care arrangements made and was leaving the kids with her neighbor, who is also an aunt of one of the children. Morris was also advised that Child Protective Services would be contacted and that she should expect a follow up with them.

Morris was released with an appearance ticket.