SPRING, Texas – A woman captured on video leaving a child alone outside a stranger's home could face charges, according to the sheriff's office.
The video went viral overnight as investigators with the Montgomery County Sheriff's Office tried to track down the toddler's parents.
The child's father tells KHOU 11 News the woman in the video had dropped the toddler off at the wrong home. It happened at about 8:30 p.m. Wednesday in the 30700 block of Legends Ridge.
Surveillance video showed the woman, now identified as a friend of the child’s mother, knocking on the door of a Spring home. She then ran back to her car before anyone could answer the door, leaving behind the child and two bags. The homeowner told deputies she heard the knock and went to see who it was, and that's when she found the toddler with no one else around.
Sheriff's deputies responded and knocked on nearby doors to see if anyone recognized the child but couldn't immediately find his parents.
The video was publicized overnight, and on Thursday morning, while the father was leaving his house, he was approached by the media.
“Ya’ll know where he at?" Willie Simmons asked reporters. They told him CPS had the child. "That’s my son!”
He said he recognized the child as his son. He said the woman shown in the video had dropped the child off at the wrong home.
The father spoke with investigators and said earlier in the day Wednesday he was told a friend would drop the child off in the evening. When the child did not show at his door, however, he assumed the plans had changed and left for the evening.
“What if they wasn’t home? He could have roamed down the street, got hit by a car, somebody could have kidnapped him,” Simmons said.
Investigators have not released the identity of the mother’s friend but said that after speaking with the District Attorney’s Office she could face felony abandonment charges.
The child is now in the custody of Child Protective Services, and they are working to reunite him with his father and family. The mother of child, who shares custody of the boy, was in the hospital overnight and was just discharged Thursday morning, the father says.
Simmons says he’s grateful that homeowner opened the door when she did.
CPS will talk to detectives and ultimately decide which parent gets custody.