Woman blames phone call for wandering child found in New Orleans East on Monday _lowres

Keisha Jones

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A woman booked on child desertion after her 2-year-old daughter was found on the street in New Orleans East on Monday told police that she did not notice the toddler was gone because she was distracted talking to a relative on the phone.

Judges set bail for Keisha Jones, 28, at $20,000 on that count and a separate warrant for her arrest in Harris County, Texas.

Jones’ daughter was found at Evangeline Street and Hammond Road, a half-block from her mother’s home, by a passer-by about 6:50 a.m. Monday. Failing to find the child’s parent, the person took the child to the 7th District station.

After the lost child was publicized in the media, Jones arrived at the station house to claim her daughter.

Jones told police that she walked four other children to a bus stop about 6 a.m., leaving the girl at home. When she returned, she said, she heard the girl crying but did not check on her.

Jones assumed her daughter went back to sleep when she stopped crying, according to the arrest record. She told police that she did not check on the girl because she was on the phone. She admitted that she had left the door to the house unlocked and that the young girl had shown in the past that she knew how to open doors.

Only after her daughter had been missing for more than two hours, according to police, did Jones realize that she was gone. At 8:58 a.m., she called the station to tell police that she was on her way.

In addition to the arrest warrant in Harris County, Jones also is wanted on a charge of violating the terms of probation for illegally possessing Xanax in Jefferson Parish.