DPD: Two moms arrested, accused of leaving kids alone at hotel to drink

Haynes and Barrus

Credit: Dallas County Jail

Jessica Haynes, left, and Leona Barrus were arrested and charged with child abandonment on March 11, 2014.

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by MARJORIE OWENS

WFAA

Posted on March 13, 2014 at 12:41 PM

Updated Thursday, Mar 13 at 1:04 PM

DALLAS — Two mothers were charged with child abandonment after they left their children alone inside a hotel room to bar hop on Greenville Avenue, revealed Dallas police arrest warrants.

According to the reports, officers were called to the scene where a woman appeared lost and disoriented Tuesday night in the 5800 block of Sandhurst Lane. Upon their arrival, they found 30-year-old Jessica Haynes.

The officers reported a strong smell of alcohol on Haynes' breath and said she unable to recall her name and couldn't walk or stand on her own.

Haynes was transported to a detention center, where she revealed to police she was concerned for her children, who she left alone at a hotel. However, Haynes said she couldn't recall which hotel. She told police she and a friend, 30-year-old Leona Barrus, went to several bars that night and both left their children alone inside a hotel room.

Haynes said she and her friend became involved in a fight after they went to the first bar and the two became separated.

An Amber Alert was issued for Barrus and the two children as officers went to several hotels in an attempt to locate the children.

Authorities were eventually able to locate the children with Barrus at a hotel off Central Expressway through a ping from Barrus' phone. Officers said she was uncooperative and became involved in a brief struggle with police inside the hotel room.

Both women were charged with child abandonment and booked into the Lew Sterrett Justice Center.

Leona Barrus, who has been released on bail from jail, said she never left the hotel room as has been alleged.

“I stayed with the kids all night, and I woke up to the police banging on my door saying there’s missing children,” she said Thursday. “I never left the room. I never went bar-hopping.”

She faults police for taking the word of Haynes, who was found heavily intoxicated behind a trash bin. Barrus also denies struggling with the police.

“It’s all the police taking the word of this super-wasted person,” Barrus said.

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