Mother of child found home alone fights for custody
MIAMI (WSVN) -- A South Florida mother who was arrested and charged with child neglect after her youngest child was found home alone with only a 5-year-old for company said she will fight to regain custody of her three children.
Twenty-four-year-old Naquisha Thomas bonded out of Jail Thursday morning, one day after her 1-year-old daughter and another 5-year-old girl were found home alone.
At a bond hearing Thursday, the state awarded temporary custody of Thomas' children to their grandmother.
A Department of Children and Families employee described at length the condition in which she Thomas' daughter and the other girl Thomas claims she was baby-sitting Wednesday morning. "The kitchen was deplorable because there was a refrigerator-- I opened the refrigerator and there was mold all over and the stench was so bad," she said. "On the tables [there] was food that seemed as if was left there for two or three days."
The DCF worker discovered the girls playing in the street outside Thomas home at 1810 NW 46th St. "The dog ran to the street, so they ran after the dog, and this is a very busy area," said a neighbor.
"She said, 'No one's here,'" the worker said when she asked Thomas' daughter about her mother's whereabouts. The DCF employee said the children were as filthy as their surroundings. "The shirt was dirty, the child's face was not washed," she said.
According to DCF officials, Thomas showed up about an hour later and claimed she had left the girls alone for five minutes. Police then arrested Thomas and charged her with child neglect.
In January of 2012 Thomas was arrested for leaving her children alone for hours. "This happened before, like last year or so, when it was a big chaos and things like that, so this is what I'm saying, I was surprised that this is going on again," said a neighbor. "You know, you should know better from the first time."
Another neighbor said, "I've seen the kids go to the store by themselves and they are only 4 and 5, or something like that."
Thomas' two older children, 5 and 6-year-old boys, were in school at the time their little sister was found by the DCF worker. All three of them are currently in state custody.
DCF officials also interviewed the father of the 5-year-old girl who was staying with Thomas' daughter.
City of Miami officials posted three separate notices of code violations in front of Thomas' residence, giving the homeowner 10 days to clean up her house. Animal Services also took two dogs from the property.
Thomas' children and their grandmother are scheduled to appear in juvenile court Friday for another dependency hearing.
(Copyright 2013 by Sunbeam Television Corp. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)