On Saturday evening, a grandmother of two was arrested and accused of endangering her grandchildren when she took a drive with them placed in dog kennels in the back of her SUV for the trip.
Tennessee resident 62-year-old Leimome Cheeks is the grandmother of two children, ages 7 and 8. According to testimony given by some of her neighbors, she is known for being a good person and has often been seen outside playing with her grandchildren and dogs.
Cheeks reportedly took a road trip on the 95-degree evening going from Whitehaven to Collierville, with the children in tow. Cheeks had recently gotten two puppies and had their kennels in the rear of her vehicle. Her SUV was allegedly too full of items to allow the children to use the standard seats, so Cheeks asked them to ride in the kennels for the 30-minute trip instead.
Someone notified the police and reported that they had seen Cheeks driving with the kids inside of the kennels and the authorities dispatched to the Whitehaven home to check out the situation.
Cheeks pulled up to the house while the police were still present, and the affidavit reflects that the officers saw the children were sitting in the back seat of the Ford Explorer and not in the kennels.
When Cheeks was questioned she reportedly told the officers that she did take the drive to Collier with the children inside of the dog kennels, but that she had stopped to check on them throughout the time they were there and she did not believe she had done anything wrong.
The children were spoken to by the police as well, and they said that they were hot when they were inside of the kennels.
Officers took Cheeks into custody and she is facing charges of two counts of child endangerment. She was released after posting the ordered bail amount on Sunday, and she was scheduled to appear in court on June 11.
While Cheeks had the children in the dog kennels a concerned bystander spotted and filmed the incident, and posted it on the internet where it quickly reached “viral” status.
The children have not been taken into custody by child protective services at this time.
If you or someone you love is suspected of child endangerment, contact Orange County criminal defense lawyer Staycie R. Sena at (949) 477-8088 for a consultation now.