Amanda Jardinez brought her six kids into a Nashville, Tennessee, Walmart store and left them there, even instructing the kids to go back inside when they tried to follow her out, police say.
The incident took place this week, with authorities saying the 24-year-old Kentucky mom intentionally left her six kids inside the store. As KATU reported, police said Amanda Jardinez told her children to find a store employee, then left the store with the kids still inside.
Once in the parking lot, police said that Jardinez got into a Dodge Caravan with a man and her 5-year-old daughter and left the scene. It was not clear the relationship between the 24-year-old and the six kids left inside the store, with the report not saying if all belonged to Jardinez.
The story garnered some national interest this week, with many sharing it on social media. This is not the first story of a bizarre Walmart arrest to gain viral attention, with a number of other strange incidents there gaining viral attention
Back in 2013, a Texas woman named Kristen Reeves was arrested on charges that she shoplifted from a Walmart store and then used her baby as a human shield as she tried to evade store security and flee her arrest. As KHOU reported, the 24-year-old was seen on surveillance video swiping a cell phone from the store and then attempting to bring it to the service desk for a refund. But store security caught on to her scheme and questioned the mom.
Police said that Reeves then used her baby to help her escape, putting the young child between herself and the loss prevention officers as she made a run for it. In her rush to flee the store, police said Reeves banged her baby’s head against a fire extinguisher.
Reeves was eventually able to escape the store, but police said she left the baby behind.
Family friend Elaine Cauthen told KHOU that Reeves was trying to be a good mother to her baby, but needed some help and guidance.
“She means well, but I think she needs some guidance,” Cauthen said. “It s a sad situation really, but she kind of needs a mother to take care of her.”
According to CPD, Amanda Jardinez entered a Walmart in Columbia and told the kids to find a worker.https://t.co/hUbnduD4DN
— KFOX14 News (@KFOX14) August 26, 2019
In Nashville, police arrested Amanda Jardinez on charges of abandoning her children and wanton endangerment. She was also charged with a separate assault count, which had a warrant for her arrest.