Williamsburg mom charged after toddler found wandering alone across street

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Williamsburg, Va. - A woman in Williamsburg is facing a felony charge after police say her toddler was found walking alone across a busy street Saturday afternoon.

Audrey Wright was arrested Saturday, charged with abuse and neglect of a child.

Police say the 2-year-old walked across Merrimac Trail, which is right next to their house, then ran in front of a truck before someone stopped him.

Wright told NewsChannel 3 he was able to slip out without her realizing, and it could have happened to anyone.

Wright says she was doing housework at the time when her sister spotted him outside and brought him back in.

"If anything would have happened to my son I would die.  I can't even imagine something happening to him," Wright said.

She says the arrest came as a shock.  Police say one of the reasons they decided to charge her is because they were called to her house last month when the toddler got outside, but didn't file any charges then.

Wright says she's doing what she can to keep it from happening.  The toddler can unlock the door, so they had new locks installed that he can't reach.  Unfortunately, Wright says on Saturday the door had been left unlocked by another family member.

She'll be in court for a preliminary hearing in Dec.


  • Rachel Humphrey

    I think it depends on if what is saying is true. Because 20yrs ago a neighbor would have gotten him and brought him back in but these days the neighbors only want to ether watch the kid die or put the mother in jail. If they could gather evidence that it happens every day or even once a week that would be dif. but if the last time anyone saw him out alone was a month ago and since than the door lock has in fact been replaced well than i personally would let it go..

  • Sue Velociraptor-Plater

    1st time an accident. Should have learned from that mistake and childproofed the exits. I feel badly for this mother, but she should have taken precautions after the first time. Her son could have been kidnapped, hit by a car. etc. It is negligence on her part. She should have been sent to a parenting class which encompasses safety measures. Hopefully she will get that now and realize the importance of knowing where your toddle is at all times.

  • rose

    Just another example of the police jumping in to a families business.
    She had locks and cannot watch each member lock it.
    Heck – he is a toddler and an adventurer at that!!
    I bet she won’t let any one into her house.
    Police have more to do,like catch molesters .And taxpayers don’t like money spent on dumb charges.

  • kellee

    Absolutely not! I had boys who did the same thing, in fact one of mine climbed a fence at 11 months old, they would also escape out open windows when put in their rooms. I had to install pin locks at the top of the doors. People are way too fast jump in without caring or thought. I can’t imagine this mother wants her child injured. She may just need someone to help with ways to keep an obvious active smart toddler in check. So instead of being so quick to arrest and judge why don’t people stop and help..I just don’t get it!!

  • B&B MOM

    I have to agree with the first reply. If she in fact changed the locks and tried to prevent this from happening, they should not be charging her with a felony. Kids like to “escape” the house/yard at times. It doesn’t make her a bad mother because her child got out. I’m sure she is thanking her lucky stars that her baby wasn’t hurt/killed/kidnapped. I’m sure that in and of itself will prompt her to take additional safety measures.

    It is hard to keep your eyes on your children 24×7. If you can do it, good for you. Many of us can’t. Just because you have a child doesn’t mean the world stops. You still have to do chores, work, cook, etc…

    Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones.

  • Neva

    I have two children and they have never escaped. This mother shoud b charged once ok twice no. She could have purchased many things to prevent this and he is 2 she should have been watching him more often period.

    • Milwife

      You then are lucky your children weren’t curious about what was outside of your door. I have several friends who’s children would play w/the door as we visited to try to get out. Don’t judge every child is different in their curiosity.

  • Milwife

    I have a friend who’s daughter is autistic and fast on the go. She had to place a lock at the top of the doors and alarms… HER DAUGHTER FIGURED IT OUT… and got out w/no shoes and it was raining outside. Don’t judge, offer helpful thoughts. I am not saying this child has autism but I am saying every child is different and new parents. Childproofing doors & windows are often overlooked but be aware it can happen. I disagree w/charges, maybe a parenting safety class would be more helpful.


    Don’t those cops have anything better to do? Obviously they’ve never had to keep an eye on toddlers. Turn your head away a second and they’re gone. The cops and CPS need to look at people who don’t give a hoot for their kids.
    Trying to justify their shaky jobs.

  • Samantha Batkins

    Wow, some of the comments on here are crazy! I am a mother of two toddlers. When my oldest was 2 he OPENED the front door and I had the locks moved the very same day! Never. Happened. Again! We also have 7 people in our home and I made sure they all got into the habit of locking the door. My toddler also got outside at his father’s house, far enough for a cop to bring him home, and I wasn’t notified, my son was left in his father’s custody (even though I have full legal & physical custody) and he was sleeping and not charged for this. Completely let it go! No classes, no punishments, nothing. Lets just wait until he gets hit by a car next time… Yeah, great thinking idiots! What person in their right mind would let something like this go?!?!

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