Cops: Mother Deliberately Left Toddler Behind at Store

Chiengkham Vilaysane is under arrest
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 15, 2017 11:59 AM CDT
Cops: Mom Who Left Toddler at Store Found Days Later
Chiengkham Vilaysane, 31.   (Riverside Police)

On a rare occasion, a busy mom may forget to load her kid into the car along with her groceries. But "in my whole career I have never seen anything where out-of the blue someone [deliberately] leaves their kid in a crowded grocery store," an officer tells Fox 11. That's exactly what police say happened Sunday in Riverside, Calif. Based on surveillance video, police say the woman entered a Food-4-Less with her 2-year-old girl in tow. At some point, the child became separated from the woman, and when another shopper returned the girl to her, she responded, "Oh, just leave her," say police. The woman then paid for her groceries and left, alone.

Police found the girl unharmed at the store and turned her over to child protective services. On Monday, they released an image from surveillance video showing the woman the child had identified as "mommy." Chiengkham "Cindy" Vilaysane, 31, was then spotted and arrested at a bank on Tuesday on suspicion of child neglect and willfully harming a child, reports the Press-Enterprise. Police have not said why they believe Vilaysane left her daughter behind, but they say she has mental health issues and drug and alcohol problems, per CBS Los Angeles. (More California stories.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.