NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - A 24-year-old Nacogdoches woman accepted a plea bargain deal of five years deferred adjudication for child endangerment in connection to a May incident in which she let her children, ages 2 and 4, play near State Highway 21.
Amber Michelle Stanley appeared in a Nacogdoches County judicial district court Tuesday morning. The deferred adjudication means that Stanley will basically be on probation for five years. If she doesn't get into any more trouble during that period, the charges will be dropped from her record.
According to a spokeswoman for the Nacogdoches County District Attorney's Office, the children's father, Danny Lee Baggett, 33, of Nacogdoches, was no-billed by the same grand jury that indicted Stanley back in June, which means the child endangerment charges against him were dropped.
A previous East Texas News story stated that Stanley and Baggett were arrested after a driver on State Highway 21 West reported seeing two children, aged 2 and 4, playing on the shoulder of the road Thursday morning.
Chief Deputy Stephen Godfrey of the Nacogdoches County Sheriff's Office said a driver called around 10:30 a.m. and said the children were playing around the 2000 block of Highway 21, and she had pulled over and got them off the side of the road. She said both were on the shoulder and one had even come close to the white line between the shoulder and the road.
NCSO Deputies arrived and yelled through an open door, and the mother, Stanley, finally woke up. Godfrey said the mother had no idea where her children were or how long they had been by the road.
Child Protective Services arrived and took custody of the children. Their father, Baggett, also came to the house.
Godfrey explained that there have been issues with the mother before, and Baggett was aware she was not capable of watching the children. Baggett committed a crime by allowing Stanley to be alone with the children, Godfrey said. In addition, the NCSO chief deputy said Baggett also seemed to have a hard time understanding why allowing children to play by the road was a criminal act.
Deputies arrested both on charges of state-jail felony abandoning a child. Godfrey said Baggett struggled a little with deputies during the arrest and is also charged with Class A misdemeanor resisting arrest.
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