HOUSTON -- Police have charged a Houston woman with abandoning a severely handicapped 8-year-old, leaving him without food, water or medication.
Officials said the mentally disabled boy is bedridden with cerebral palsy and requires round-the-clock care, but he was left to fend for himself for 23 hours.
Investigators said Adrienne Lopez (pictured) , 29, was was hired as a caregiver for the boy, but left him alone to go meet a friend. She apparently intended to only be gone for a little while, but it didn't work out that way.
Shortly after leaving the boy, Lopez was stopped by Harris County deputies and jailed for some old traffic warrants out of another county.
She did not tell the officers that the boy was home alone with no one to look after him.
Instead, she called her sister and left a message.
By the time her sister received the message and got Jersey Village police over to the apartment in the 11000 block of Pleasant Colony, the boy had been alone for almost an entire day and night.
Medics found him dehydrated and took him to Texas Children's Hospital.
Next-door neighbor Darwin Pratt said he saw the commotion as he left for work.
"I came home from work and it was a couple of police cars and an ambulance," Pratt said. "It's heartbreaking. It's sad and it's heartbreaking."
The boy is doing fine now, police said.
Lopez is in the Austin County Jail awaiting trial on traffic charges. She has also been charged with a state felony of abandoning a child.
If convicted, Lopez could get up to two years in state jail.
She is behind bars, being held on a $2,000 bond.
Friday, January 14, 2011
KPRC-TV in Houston:
Posted by BA Haller at 10:24 PM