Maintenance worker finds 2 toddlers locked in apartment

Acworth toddlers left home alone, mother arrested

For more than eight hours Wednesday, two Acworth toddlers were left unattended in a locked apartment bedroom.

There was a soiled diaper on the floor and human waste on a closet door. Water flowed from a bathroom sink and the carpet was soaked.

Those were some of the new details that emerged Thursday afternoon, hours after Cherokee authorities announced the arrest of the toddlers’ mother on two counts of cruelty to children.

A maintenance worker told deputies that someone reported a water leak in the ceiling of one of the units at the Waldan Pond Apartments on Bells Ferry Road, according to an incident report. When the worker went upstairs to another unit about 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, he found two boys, a 2- and 3-year-old, Lt. Jay Baker with the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office said.

The boys didn’t have on any clothes and feces was smeared across the carpet, according to the report.

Investigators determined their mother, 22-year-old Angel Henderson, had been gone since about 11 a.m. Henderson did not deny leaving the children and told deputies that she was delayed getting home because her car had been disabled for non-payment of car insurance, according to the report. She told authorities she wasn’t gone for long and had to take a taxi home. But a preliminary investigation found Henderson works until 8 p.m. Monday through Friday. It was not clear how often Henderson left the children alone, but a report of the incident said the lock on the bedroom door was installed backward, so that the door locked from the outside.

Monique Corey, Henderson’s friend, said the young mother is a good person in a bad situation.

“She is not a bad mother,” Corey told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “She made a bad decision, and it is one that will affect her for a long time. I hate the way things happened, but it is what it is.”

Henderson called people to pick up her children, but officials concluded they were unsuitable for various reasons. The boys were taken by officials from the Division of Family and Children Services.

Henderson is being held at the Cherokee County Adult Detention Center in lieu of $44,400 bond. Her first appearance is scheduled for 4:30 p.m. Friday.

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