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Havasu woman left 1-year-old in car while shoplifting, police say

December 22, 2018 GMT

Police say a Lake Havasu City woman left her 1-year-old son alone in her unlocked vehicle, with the keys in the ignition, while she allegedly shoplifted from a local department store.

Officers arrived at the store after receiving reports of shoplifting. According to the police report, Taylor J. Stephens, 28, had been inside the store for about 20 minutes when employees saw her place a power adapter in her purse. She then allegedly walked through the store’s gardening section and left the store without paying for the item.

Stephens was stopped outside the store by an employee, who escorted her to the store’s asset protection office. Stephens allegedly told the employee that her baby was alone in the parking lot. The employee retrieved Stephens’ child, the report said, and brought him into the store for safekeeping.

Officers arrested Stephens at the scene, and she agreed to speak with them about the incident. According to police, she said the power adapter wasn’t the only item she shoplifted. Also found in her bag was a packet of baby wipes, a pair of shoes, three hats, barbecue shears, a can of spray paint, and more than a dozen other miscellaneous items from the store.

A search of Stephens’ purse allegedly yielded several pills for which she did not have a prescription.

The Arizona Department of Child Services took custody of Stephens’ son, and she was charged with shoplifting, possession of prescription drugs and one felony count of child abuse.