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SC Mother Arrested After Police Find Baby Alone In Freezing Car

The Charlott Observer

February 14, 2011

SIMPSONVILLE – A South Carolina woman is scheduled to appear in court later today after authorities say she left her 17-month-old daughter in a disabled car on an interstate highway early Sunday while she went to get gas.

Jessica Perry, of Simpsonville, will make her initial court appearance Monday afternoon in Gaston County. She has been charged with DWI — her second such charge in a week — and her daughter Ava has been placed with the Gaston County Department of Social Services.

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Jessica Perry

The N.C. Highway Patrol says Perry’s car broke down shortly after midnight Saturday on Interstate 85 near mile marker 16.

Perry told troopers she ran out of gas and went to get fuel at a station. When she returned, she was arrested. In addition to DWI, she was charged with driving with a revoked license.

She was charged Feb. 5 in Charlotte with DWI.

Perry’s neighbor Matt Dennis told WCNC-TV, the Observer’s news partner, “Just hearing something like that is pretty awful.”

Other neighbors, who asked to remain anonymous, say the news of Perry’s arrest is sad and shocking.

“That’s pretty bad, you know. She needs to get her stuff together,” says Dennis.

The little girl, Ava, is in good condition, authorities say. Perry’s mother, Linda Simpson, told NewsChannel 36 that Ava is doing OK.

“She’s in child protective, in a foster home,” says Simpson.

When asked if Perry has ever done anything like this before, Simpson would only say no.

Simpson described her daughter as “a great mother.”

Perry is being held on $25,000 bond.


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