The mother of a 9-month-old boy has been accused of endangering her child when she allegedly failed to notice that the baby, who was in the car with her, had somehow exited the vehicle. The infant was discovered by people in the area who saw him crawling in the middle of a busy street without any supervision.
27-year-old Ledrika Ford and her son, accompanied by a family member whose identity has not been made public, were in a vehicle together with the baby buckled in one of the back seats. At an unknown time during their trip through Utica, NY, the child exited the vehicle without being noticed and began attempting to crawl across the street.
Passers-by spotted the infant on the road and stopped to assess the situation and assist the child. As some people attended to the crying child, several others tried to call 911 for emergency assistance.
As reported in a statement released by Utica police, Ford said that as soon as she turned around and realized her son was no longer inside the car they began backtracking and she and her relative scouted the area they had traveled until they located the baby. Ford also stated that they had no idea how the child had gotten out of the car without being noticed.
A video was captured at the scene depicting the baby in the road and displaying those supplying assistance, and near the end of the footage a woman can be heard approaching while yelling, “That’s my baby! Oh my god!”
The video was uploaded to Facebook and quickly obtained over 2 million views. Police were made aware of the video they began an investigation which led them to Ford.
Officers from the Utica Police Department accompanied by two Oneida County Child Protective Services associates made a 2-hours-long appearance to Ford’s residence resulting in the baby from the incident and her three other children, all 5-years-old and younger, being extracted from her home.
A local hospital has evaluated the infant but authorities have not made the diagnosis public at this time.
Ford is facing a misdemeanor charge of endangering the welfare of a child. If she is found guilty she could be sentenced to up to one year in prison.
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.