Mom Accused of Sleeping as Toddler Wandered Ordered to Stay Away From Child

A Wolcott mom who was arrested on Monday, accused of sleeping as her 3-year-old son rode his plastic car into the middle of the road has been ordered to stay away from her child.

Shelly Churchelow, 28, was charged with risk of injury to a minor and appeared in court on Tuesday, where a protective order was issued.

Officers were called to Spindle Hill Road around 9:30 a.m. on Monday after two passersby noticed Churchelow's toddler riding a plastic car in the middle of the street, just around a sharp curve.

"I didn't even realize what I was seeing," said one of the women who pulled over, Alex Earnshaw of Wolcott. "I was like, 'What? Is there really a baby in the street? Is there a baby car? Because I didn't see the baby at first until I pulled up closer, and there was nobody outside from the yard."

Earnshaw and another woman helped the little boy to the side of the road and called 911.

While they were waiting for police to arrive, the women noticed the door to the nearest home was wide open. The child seemed to be alone.

A police officer took the boy and called out through the open door at 475 Spindle Hill Drive, waking Churchelow, who had been asleep on the couch, according to police.

Churchelow told the officer the front door to her home had a childproof knob. While that was true, the latch was broken, allowing the door to open easily when pulled, police said.

The officer walked through Churchelow's home "and found it to be a mess," according to police.

Police contacted the Department of Children and Families and placed the toddler in the care of his grandmother.

Churchelow was released after posting $5,000 bond, appeared in court on Tuesday and her case was continued to Sept. 29.

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