Mom accused of leaving kids alone when stove catches fire

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Jaqueline Mechele Ruffin

HOUSTON - A Houston mother is in jail, accused of leaving her three young children alone in her southwest Houston apartment where her stove caught fire.

According to court documents, Jaqueline Mechele Ruffin left her 10-month-old boy, two-year-old girl and five-year-old girl alone in her apartment while she went to get gas in the early morning of May 18.

Investigators say while Ruffin was gone a fire started in the kitchen, setting off the fire alarm.

A maintenance worker entered the apartment to find the children alone, police said.

According to police, Ruffin told them she had only been gone for 10 to 15 minutes.

Ruffin, 25, is charged with abandoning child with intent to return.

She's being held in the Harris County Jail on a $2,000 bond.

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