Police on Friday cited a 29-year-old woman accused of handing her baby to a man on a Charlotte street and disappearing for hours.
A man called 911 at 7 a.m. Friday to say he’d encountered a woman and her infant at about 9 p.m. Thursday as the woman walked through the Lakewood Manor complex on Watson Drive, off Remount Road southwest of uptown. The woman asked him to watch the baby “for awhile” but never returned that night, the man told police.
Police on Friday morning released photos of the baby to the media in hopes someone could identify the 6- to 8-month-old.
The mother of the infant came forward later Friday, police said. The woman and the 911 caller gave conflicting stories, although it appears they knew each other when the baby was handed over to the man, police said.
Police issued a citation to Ya’kesha Monique Patterson for misdemeanor child neglect. The baby remains in the care of the Department of Social Services, police said.
Patterson told Observer news partner WBTV that she did not abandon her baby.
“The baby was not abandoned, it was at my uncle’s house,” she said. “I told him I was trying to contact him and he told me his phone was messed up, so I don’t know how I would have contacted him.”
She insisted the man she left the infant with overnight is her uncle, although the baby’s grandmother, the property manager and neighbors disputed that to the station.
“There are no uncles. I have no brothers – well, I have a stepbrother,” said Shadonna Richardson, the baby’s grandmother. “We do not have any family that live over here.”