5-month-old left in parked car by sleeping mother, Bedford police say

A 5-month-old baby was left unattended in a car parked on a Bedford street Monday morning for about four hours after his mother told police that she fell asleep, a Bedford police official said Monday.

A Bedford patrol officer got the infant out of the car and placed the child in an air-conditioned patrol car after responding to a report that a baby was alone in a vehicle in the 2000 block of Natchez Drive, said Bedford police Lt. Kirk Roberts.

The baby was first taken to Texas Health Hurst-Euless-Bedford hospital in Bedford and then to Cook Children's Medical Center in Fort Worth. He did not suffer life-threatening injuries, police said.

The baby's 23-year-old mother was arrested, Roberts said.

Police identified her as Vanna M. Smith of Bedford. She was in the Bedford Jail on suspicion of abandoning and endangering a child.

"She told officers that she arrived home about 4:30 a.m., went inside the house and fell asleep," Roberts said. "The baby was left in an infant seat."

An officer discovered the baby strapped in an infant seat in the unlocked car with a rear-door slightly ajar about 8:30 a.m., Roberts said.

"The window was down about an inch," Roberts said.

There were cloudy skies at the time and temperatures were in the mid-80s, according to police reports.

"The officer found the mother in the home," Roberts said. "After giving police an initial statement, she declined to talk to officers."

DOMINGO RAMIREZ JR., 817-390-7763