Police have arrested a Middletown mother after finding her 1-year-old son along a busy street, wearing only a soiled diaper and a shirt, according to police. After determining where the child lived, police went inside and described the condition as “inexcusable, unhealthy and dangerous.”
A pediatric nurse who was on her way home from work noticed the young child on the side of South Main Street, near Pinewood Terrace, just before 6 p.m. on July 11, so she pulled over and noticed the child’s diaper was soiled with urine and it was leaking, according to police, so the nurse put a towel around the child.
She also noticed bruising on the child’s face, scratches on his arms and blood on his fingers and hand, according to police.
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The police officer who responded took the child from the nurse and the little boy fell asleep in the officer’s arms.
Another officer who responded located the child’s home and spoke with the mother, identified as 31-year-old Tosha Cooley, of Middletown.
Police said she did not make it known that she knew that any of her children were out of the home and did not make any attempt to comfort her child, the arrest warrant application says.
An ambulance was called and the baby was transported to Connecticut Children’s Medical Center.
Police said Cooley’s 4-year-old son, who has autism and is non-verbal, was in the home when the incident happened. He was also wearing a diaper that was saturated, according to police.
Cooley told police that she does not get proper treatments for her son’s autism and often loses control of him. She went on to say she tried to get him in programs, but lost his spot because she was not able to get him to his appointments.
In noting conditions of the home, police said the residence smelled of urine and feces and they noted that they saw raw pasta, rice and flour on the kitchen floor and the sink was full of dishes that appeared to have been there for several days.
There was little edible food in the kitchen other than cereal and doughnuts. In the fridge, police found Ensure yogurt and said there did not appear to be any edible solid food inside, the arraignment report says.
Police also reported finding choking hazards in the house, cigarette butts covering the floor and coffee table in the basement and bottles of alcohol that were accessible to the children.
After seeing the home, the 4-year-old was also transported to Connecticut Children’s Medical Center to be evaluated.
Police said Cooley told police she heard her children playing in the sunroom, thought they were safe, began making dinner and only lost sight of the 1-year-old for five minutes, the arraignment report says.
However, police said the call about the child being found on the side of the road came in around 5:42 p.m. and when officers made contact with Cooley shortly after 6 p.m. she was not looking for the child and was not aware that he was not in the house until an officer told her.
Cooley was charged with two counts of risk of injury to a child.
When she was released, the Department of Children and Families requested that the parents and police meet at the family’s home for an evaluation before they went to the hospital.