AMERICAN FORK — A woman has been charged with leaving her two young children outside for six hours while allegedly doing drugs.
Samantha Rose Ann Espinoza, 30, of American Fork, was charged Wednesday in 4th District Court with two counts of endangerment of a child, a third-degree felony; drug possession, a class A misdemeanor; and two counts of child abuse, a class B misdemeanor.
On Saturday, Espinoza "locked her 2-year-old son and 7-year-old daughter out in 47 degree weather for about six hours," according to charging documents.
Police say neighbors noticed the children outside and provided food and extra clothes at various times throughout the afternoon. The 2-year-old, specifically, told one neighbor he was cold, the charges state.
"The 2-year-old was also wandering through the middle of the parking lot/road," according to the charges.1 comment on this story
Police and neighbors attempted to contact the mother without success, investigators said. When police arrived at the scene, an officer got the mother's door open and called out to her.
"After finally using a loudspeaker, the defendant responded to the door. The defendant believed the children were in the house. The defendant showed signs of drug use/impairment," investigators wrote in the charges.
Police served a search warrant on the residence and found methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia.