CLEARFIELD – A Clearfield woman whose two young children were found wandering on the road alone pleaded guilty Tuesday during sentencing court.
Lawrence Township police charged Tabitha Tanile Taylor, 28, with a misdemeanor count of endangering the welfare of children after an incident near the police station on April 15.
According to the affidavit of probable cause, an individual stopped in the station to report two young children walking alone down Washington Avenue in the area of Hall Street around 6:05 p.m.
An officer, who also spotted the kids, told them to stay where they were as she crossed the street and went over to them. When asked where their mother was, they said she was at home and they were walking to their grandmother’s house.
The oldest child who was 6 years old gave their mother’s name as Tabitha Taylor.
The officer zipped up their coats, took their hands and walked them across the road to the police station.
The children said their mother was at home upstairs, and explained they are allowed “to be downstairs by themselves.”
A representative of the Clearfield County Children, Family and Youth Services office was contacted and arrived at the station at 7:15 p.m.
About 10 minutes later, Taylor showed up at the station asking about the children. She stated that she had discovered them missing and was out looking for them.
She was advised by the officer that the children had been there for about 90 minutes and asked why she had not called police.
Taylor was then told the children were in protective custody and CYS had been called. When she was asked to submit to a drug test, she declined at the advice of her sister.
The next day CYS reported that the grandmother had been contacted so the children could be released to her care, but this action was stopped after the grandmother tested positive for methamphetamine.
The children were then placed in foster care.
On Tuesday, Taylor was sentenced to 30 days to one year in jail followed by one-year consecutive probation by President Judge Fredric J. Ammerman.
She must also complete a nurturing program.