An Arizona mom, who left her children in the car during a job interview, has received more than $113,000 in donations. Shanesha Taylor, age 35, said she was forced to leave her 2-year-old and 6-month-old children inside the car, as she was homeless and unemployed. Authorities have now revealed that Taylor had a job and a home at the time of her arrest.
Authorities were alerted to the situation when a witness observed one of the children crying inside the car. As the vehicle was locked, and Taylor’s whereabouts were unknown, the witness called 911.
Police responded to the scene and removed the children from the car. Both children were placed in the custody of Child Protective Services. However, it was nearly an hour before the mother returned to her vehicle.
Taylor said she was forced to leave her children in the car during her interview. As reported by KPHO News, the single mother said she was homeless and unemployed. She said she simply could not afford child care.
Despite her explanation, Shenesha Taylor was arrested in charges of child abuse and neglect. Although she was eventually released on $9,000 bond, her children remain in the custody of the state.
Taylor’s story gained nationwide attention, as many sympathized with her situation. The case prompted Amanda Bishop to start a fundraiser, which has currently raised more than $113,000.
Although Taylor has received an outpouring of public support, prosecutors assert that she is guilty of abusing and neglecting her children. Furthermore, authorities have stated that Taylor’s claims of homelessness and unemployment were false.
Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery said the single mother was in fact employed when she interviewed for another job. Taylor and her children also had a home address at the time of her arrest.
Today reports that the interior of the vehicle was more than 100 degrees. Taylor’s 6-month-old child was crying uncontrollably and both children were covered in sweat when they were removed from the car.
Attorney Benjamin Taylor insists the defendant had no choice:
“This is a single mom who was trying to get a job, and unfortunately she was arrested for trying to get a job… She wasn’t going to a liquor store. She wasn’t going to a party. She was going to a job interview… This is a case where you have a single mom who’s doing her best, who’s trying to survive out here in the world.”
Although Taylor has no prior criminal record, she is facing eight years in prison for leaving her children in the car during an interview. She is scheduled to return to court later this month.