Mother accused of leaving hurt child alone at mall


HOUSTON – A mother was arrested Monday after leaving her young child alone in Willowbrook Mall, according to Houston police.

Monica Stephens, 29, was charged with child abandonment.

Police said Stephens left her daughter alone in the play area while she walked around the mall.

A witness saw that the child hurt her ankle, noticed no adult was around, and called security.

Security located the mother inside the mall.

Police said the child was at an "unreasonable risk of harm," but acknowledged that Stephens did intend to return for the child.

Stephens also did not take the child to an emergency infant care provider, police said.