Childrearing

Homeless Mother Arrested On Child Endangerment Charges Receives Deserving Landslide Of Support

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A 35-year-old homeless Arizona mother left her two young children in a hot car while she went to a job interview. She returned to find police at her vehicle and was arrested on felony child endangerment charges. The outpouring of help she has received since this happened gives me some faith in humanity.

Shanesha Taylor left her six-month-old and her two-year-old unattended in a hot car with the windows cracked so she could attend a job interview. She and her kids are homeless. Here are the details:

Scottsdale police said a witness heard a crying child inside a Dodge Durango parked in an office complex parking lot at 9700 N. 91st St. in Scottsdale about 12:30 p.m. Thursday. The woman reported to police the two young children were inside the vehicle parked directly in the sun, with the engine off, the doors closed and each of the four windows were just slightly open.

The mother, Shanesha Taylor, 35, returned to the vehicle about 45 minutes later and told the officer she had just finished a job interview and did not have anyone to watch her children.

Immediately after I read this, I started picturing all of the scenarios that would have been better than the one she opted for; leaving two young children alone in a hot car. Then I remembered I’m not homeless. Then I remembered I have help whenever I need it in the form of a supportive family and partner. Then I remembered I’ve never known what it’s like to put my children to bed in a car. Then I saw this mugshot:

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I don’t know what it’s like to be in her situation – and I can’t even imagine it. This photo breaks my heart.

Tweny-four-year-old Amanda Bishop, was so moved by Taylor’s story that she created a fundraiser at YouCaring to help cover her legal expenses. Bishop was shooting for $9,000. As of this morning, her effort has raised over $64,000. She says of her effort:

All funds are deposited into an account of the family’s. Part of it has been used for her bail but they have now decided to hold her until the 31st and we are working to find out why. All other money will be used to help Shanesha’s situation and legal pursuits.

I hope this money helps her get her kids back and get them all a place to live. I hope it gives her enough space and relief to figure out some options for support and planning. I’ve never been in a situation like this – with absolutely no options and no one around to help me. I hope she never has to be in a position to make such a horrible decision again.

(photo: YouCaring)