PALM BEACH (CBSMiami) – A frightening situation unfolded near a major West Palm Beach intersection on Wednesday afternoon when a bank employee spotted a 4-year-old girl wandering alone and headed into traffic, according to the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office.
For hours detectives tried to figure out who she was. Then a breakthrough — they discovered that the child — Adia, her mother said — lived a short distance from the roadway and had managed to open in a window in her home and get outside undetected.
Investigators say the girl’s father was sleeping in the home when the child got loose. The girl’s mother — Nadia Dieujuste — said she was getting her hair done and left the 4-year-old, a 2-year-old and a one-month-old home with the children’s father.
“Police say my child came out the window and they found her in the street and a car almost hit her,” Dieujuste said, through a Creole interpreter.
PBSO tells CBS 4 News the child’s father was arrested for child neglect. CBS 4 cameras were rolling as the Department of Children and Families removed all three children from the home. The children’s mother cannot understand how their father could fall asleep.
“Because he was sleeping, and they said they found the little girl in the street for three hours, so he wasn’t suppose to be sleeping for three hours, he should have been watching the kids,” Dieujuste said.
The sight of seeing her children loaded into a DCF worker’s car and driven away was nearly too much for this mother to bear.
“I don’t know. I can’t talk. I don’t feel like I’m going to live right now,” she said.
Dieujuste said she has a family court date on Thursday afternoon and she’s hopeful that a judge will return the children to her.