Baby left in parking space

Tuesday, July 14, 2009 11:28 AM
Last updated 3:28 PM
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An Augusta woman was arrested after leaving her infant outside an Evans fast-food restaurant, according to a Columbia County Sheriff’s Office incident report.

Harriett Hornsby Thomas, 27, of the 2400 block of Norton Drive, was charged Saturday with first-degree cruelty to children and abandonment of child.

She was released Sunday from the Columbia County Detention Center on a $27,000 bond, according to a jailer.

On Saturday, a woman driving in the McDonald’s parking lot at 4264 Washington Road saw an infant lying in a carrier in a parking space, according to the report. The 56-year-old took the baby inside the restaurant, but no one there claimed the infant.

Columbia County deputies were called to the restaurant about 6:30 p.m.

After police had arrived, Thomas’ husband, Christopher, came to the restaurant. He said that his wife told him “she lost their child” and remembered she had gone to McDonald’s.

Before walking inside McDonald’s, a man said, he saw a woman set down the carrier while dealing with another child. Another woman said that she spoke with Mrs. Thomas, who had the baby with her at that time, as their children played on the playground.

The infant was given to her grandfather by Richmond County’s Division of Family and Children Services, according to the report.

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TrukinRanger
1748
Points
TrukinRanger 07/14/09 - 11:36 am
0
0
Hey Lady... go ahead and have
Unpublished

Hey Lady... go ahead and have a few more babies... I'm sure you'll be able to keep up with too.

FlyersFan77
0
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FlyersFan77 07/14/09 - 11:38 am
0
0
Thank God no one ran over the

Thank God no one ran over the baby, that parking lot is pretty tight. Did they know how long a time span it was between the mother leaving the child in the parking space and when she realized she "lost" her infant? I'm thankful the baby was not harmed, but why was the mother arrested if it was an accident? Do the police have information that she intentionally neglected and abandoned her baby? There has to be more to this story than what we're reading here.

momof2
0
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momof2 07/14/09 - 11:55 am
0
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I'm sure there is a LOT more

I'm sure there is a LOT more to the story than what we see here. BUT, based on what the article says, it does not sound like this was an intentional act. It sounds like maybe the mom is overwhelmed with things, and that is not a crime. I feel bad for the mom. Yes, it's terrible that this happened and it's awful to think of what 'could' have happened, but it seems like a terrible accident, especially with the fater coming back into the restaurant. It's hard to say for sure whether this lady should be charged, because you can't 'forget' your baby like a purse or set of keys, BUT we also need to be more understanding of moms and what they go through, instead of being so judgemental. I can see how this could have happened.

poolmom
49
Points
poolmom 07/14/09 - 11:56 am
0
0
Some people do not need kids

Some people do not need kids at all@!

purmkinhed
27
Points
purmkinhed 07/14/09 - 12:33 pm
0
0
Sorry. I had 3 kids and have

Sorry. I had 3 kids and have 7 grands and sometimes have them all at once but I have NEVER NEVER NEVER been so distracted as to "forget" one. Sounds to me like the law needs to do some drug testing here!

rufus
2
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rufus 07/14/09 - 12:37 pm
0
0
Children may wonder off but

Children may wonder off but you have to be very high to forget one

DeborahElliott2
4
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DeborahElliott2 07/14/09 - 12:41 pm
0
0
I am speechless! I cannot

I am speechless! I cannot believe you people would actually excuse this kind of thing!

momof2
0
Points
momof2 07/14/09 - 12:52 pm
0
0
If drugs are involved then

If drugs are involved then the police will be able to discern that and, of course, that changes things. I have never 'forgotten' one of my children either, but I have been overwhelmed and can see how it could happen.

O_O
0
Points
O_O 07/14/09 - 12:52 pm
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0
Before you start slinging

Before you start slinging mud, keep in mind that you don't know this woman or what was going on with her when this happened. I, however, have known her since she was in the womb and know that she is a completely gentle, kind and innocent soul who cares about her children and her husband far more than ever about herself. She did not "abandon" her baby. She, like so many of us, got sidetracked and went on auto-pilot, heading home as though she had put her baby in the car as she always does. This is no different than what has happened to many a parent, sometimes with genuinely tragic results. There was no malice, willfulness or evil involved. It was an accident arising from distraction and inattention. The charges are ludicrous and nowhere near what the situation warrants, and if the ColCo DA isn't a completely hateful soul without any discernment or wisdom, these charges will be dropped or atleast reduced to something more appropriate.

momof2
0
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momof2 07/14/09 - 12:59 pm
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You know, O_O, you're right.

You know, O_O, you're right. What about all the people who have accidentally left their children in their car seats all day, only to come back out and find them dead? Nobody hollers 'drugs' about that, and there have been some instances where the caretakers weren't even charged. That's far worse than what happened here.

O_O
0
Points
O_O 07/14/09 - 01:01 pm
0
0
Some of you people are

Some of you people are seriously hateful as well as ignorant. You make assumptions that have no basis in fact or that are even listed as possibilities in the information provided. You shame yourselves by such smug self-righteousness. I hope God is as merciful to you and your loved ones as he was to Harriett's.

Debster
1
Points
Debster 07/14/09 - 01:12 pm
0
0
I can sympathize with this

I can sympathize with this mother, although I, too, have never left one of my children behind at a restaurant, park, etc. Mothers have to juggle so many hats and often it can be overwhelming. I'm not sure how old her other child is, but that child could have been causing a ruckus that may have distracted her to the point that she thought she had already attended to the infant. Please, people, say a prayer today for this family.

noway
201
Points
noway 07/14/09 - 01:40 pm
0
0
O_O You are right, I MAY be

O_O You are right, I MAY be ignorant to everything that woman was going through, but she FORGOT her child? I don't care what I had on my mind...you don't FORGET your child, and FORGET the child in a parking lot? Whether or not there was malice, and I"m sure none intended, this is negligence.

tdp
0
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tdp 07/14/09 - 01:42 pm
0
0
Although I have never left my

Although I have never left my child anywhere, I can certainly see how this could easily happen. Many mothers, especially ones with babies, are sleep deprived and overwhelmed. Think about it, if she really wanted to abandon this baby would she really leave it in a parking space? Not likely. It's much more likely that she just set this baby down next to the car while she buckled the other child in. I think law enforcement was wrong here in charging her. Maybe instead of blaming mothers all the time we should look into ways we can help them more to get them through those tough first years.

O_O
0
Points
O_O 07/14/09 - 02:12 pm
0
0
We all forget the people in

We all forget the people in our lives, everyday. Usually we don't do it in ways that cost us more than momentary embarrassment, annoyance or hurt feelings, but we still do it. This kind of thing happens with every single one of us, but not usually in such a spectacular and public way. This is a situation and these are people who deserve your sympathy, and your prayers if you pray, and not your smug evaluation and judgment. Truly, there, but for the grace of God, go you or I. So try to be kind even if you somehow mistakenly believe you have a right to slander her any way you like.

weatheringheights
0
Points
weatheringheights 07/14/09 - 02:50 pm
0
0
I'm sorry guys, flat out

I'm sorry guys, flat out exaustion doesn't excuse leaving your child in a parking spot. If you are that tired, maybe someone else needs to take care of the child so she can get her rest. I am more likely inclined to believe it was a case of post partum depression. She should be examined so that if it is PPD, she can start treatment right away and be reunited with her baby. O__O, exactly what are you doing to help the situation. Sure, you are defending her because she was "overwelmed", but are you offering to come over and help her clean house, or to keep her other children so she can take a walk or a nap? Actions speak louder than words.

calihali
0
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calihali 07/14/09 - 02:51 pm
0
0
Just as I said the other day

Just as I said the other day in my comment about the elderly lady's purse being snatched at Kroger in Evans - nine out of ten times when there are incidents in Columbia County the ones involved are Richmond County residents (Norton Drive is in S. Augusta).

farfrompuken 101
0
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farfrompuken 101 07/14/09 - 06:52 pm
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0
who bailed her out of jail?

who bailed her out of jail?

jack
10
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jack 07/14/09 - 07:42 pm
0
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My wife took care of 3 kids

My wife took care of 3 kids when I was deployed in the Army and wasn't "over whelmed". Seems young women these days have no clue as to parenting.

HillGuy
7
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HillGuy 07/14/09 - 08:31 pm
0
0
Is it possible to keep the

Is it possible to keep the stupid Augusta trash out of Columbia County?

colcamp1
10
Points
colcamp1 07/14/09 - 09:04 pm
0
0
Only if you keep the stupid

Only if you keep the stupid Columbia County trash out of Augusta. What a dang idiot.

HillGuy
7
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HillGuy 07/14/09 - 09:12 pm
0
0
Yeah we all know there is an

Yeah we all know there is an epidemic of Columbia County residents going into Richmond County and committing crimes or doing stupid things like this.

HillGuy
7
Points
HillGuy 07/14/09 - 09:16 pm
0
0
can't you people just stay on

can't you people just stay on the Jerry Springer side of town? There's not enough buffets, liquor stores and pawn shops to entertain you over there?

gnumbgnuts
0
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gnumbgnuts 07/14/09 - 09:40 pm
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0
Hey HillGay, We've all been

Hey HillGay, We've all been to the CC fair. You freaks have nothing to brag about.

TakeAstand
13
Points
TakeAstand 07/14/09 - 09:40 pm
0
0
Wow, I truely hope a medical

Wow, I truely hope a medical condition caused her to do this rather than to think it was drugs or just plain irresponsibility. Possibly a post partum condition, post partum anxiety and depression can be very very tough, sometimes unbearable on a mother who just gave birth. How horrible!!! Thank God the child is safe!!

Damon Cline
11
Points
Damon Cline 07/14/09 - 10:01 pm
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0
Since commentary on this news

Since commentary on this news story has veered from the mother's irresponsibility to "Richmond County" crime encroaching into Columbia County (as if there's a magical wall separating the two), here's something to consider: Parts of Columbia County are quickly becoming Richmond Countyesque. As CC's political machine (i.e., landowners, realtors, developers) continue allowing apartments and low-cost townhomes to spring up, you can expect those units to be filled by people of a lower socioeconomic demographic. Same for the county's older neighborhoods; as older residents die off, the upwardly mobile families move up to higher priced homes deeper and deeper into Columbia County. S. Columbia County will be the new S. Augusta (Washington Road already looks like Gordon Highway) and the school system will no longer be able to say "all" its schools perform above average. Now that the lower-income have gained a foothold, expect a bus system, housing projects and other money-sucking social services to follow. The CC leaders who don't live in gated communities (and maybe went to the Martinez K-Mart once in a while) would see that the "quality of life" they brag about is quickly disappearing.

gnumbgnuts
0
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gnumbgnuts 07/14/09 - 10:05 pm
0
0
Yea, what he said!

Yea, what he said!

Asitisinaug
3
Points
Asitisinaug 07/14/09 - 10:19 pm
0
0
Sorry momof2 but you just

Sorry momof2 but you just don't forget your children, especially those young enough not to look out for theirselves. The police rightfully arrested the mom and the courts can decide if she is overwhelmed or has a justifiable excuse of which in my personal opinion would still not be acceptable. Either way, she deserves the arrest and can tell her story to the judge.

TakeAstand
13
Points
TakeAstand 07/14/09 - 10:43 pm
0
0
You are exactly right dcline,

You are exactly right dcline, those are some of the exact reasons for the downfall. I hate to say, but the reason we moved here from S. Augusta is the same one that is driving us to look to move again out of Martinez!!! And boy what a fast rate it is declining at too, when and will CC put a stop to it!!!!

Pu239
284
Points
Pu239 07/14/09 - 10:55 pm
0
0
HillGay must live in a gated
Unpublished

HillGay must live in a gated community.... I can think of a gated community where he would fit right in...It's on Tobacco Road.

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