Twice in the past 10 days, police in Westport arrested mothers whose children were found alone—one a 2-year-old girl wandering outside and one a 4-year-old boy in a car—in dangerously low temperatures.
The girl was found wandering in the roadway in adult slippers, long pajama pants, a long sleeve T-shirt and no jacket. The boy came in out of the cold, jacketless, to the tanning salon where his mother was getting some midwinter color, and when notified by employees of the establishment, she reportedly told him "that he was supposed to stay in the car."
In both cases, the children's mother was charged with risk of injury to a minor, a felony offense.
Typically, such incidents come to the attention of police in New Canaan when a third-party calls in with a tip, according to Sgt. Carol Ogrinc of the town's police department.
Like police officers may see when they're on patrol, citizens "may have noticed it in a parking lot when they're leaving a store or something, and they call it in," Ogrnic said.
Calls of children and pets left in a car with windows closed during the dog days of summer are more common than calls of children left in the cold in the winter, she said.