Mother charged with neglect after leaving kids alone

Published: Tuesday, May 7, 2013 at 1:41 p.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, May 7, 2013 at 1:41 p.m.

A Gainesville woman was arrested Monday afternoon on allegations she left her children alone for several hours, according to a Gainesville Police Department arrest report.

Shelby Lynn Marshall, 29, of 2635 SW 35th Place, was charged with two counts of child neglect after an officer found her children, ages 6 and 10, in the parking lot of their apartment complex. They had been unsupervised for about two hours.

Police reported that Marshall told the children to stay in the apartment of a neighbor who was supposed to watch them, but that person left with Marshall.

The children told police that Marshall sometimes leaves them to drink and do drugs, according to the report.

Marshall returned more than three hours after she left, after several urgent calls were made by the grandmother of the children, according to the report. The state Department of Children and Families had earlier investigated the family, resulting in a stipulation that the children were not to be left alone with the grandmother.

Police said Marshall smelled of alcohol but said she had been to the probation office and to the store.

The report states Marshall told police that the grandmother was supposed to be watching the children but admitted she told the children to watch television in the apartment of the neighbor even though she knew no one was in the apartment.

- Cindy Swirko

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