Toronto Sun

Monday, August 19, 2002

Doper's hungry kids left to roam building

By JONATHAN JENKINS, TORONTO SUN

Hungry, half-naked and abandoned in a filthy, bottle-strewn apartment with a door open to a 14th-floor balcony, two toddlers spent a day riding an elevator looking for their mom.

"It just breaks your heart. How could someone do that to these babies?" asked Maureen Higgins, who discovered the three-year-old boy and his two-year-old sister as she came home to her apartment near St. Clair Ave. and Bathurst about 4 p.m. on Friday.

"He just said 'My mommy lost.' She never said one word."

The boy was trying to take care of his sister, who was diaperless and her hair covered in ketchup, the only thing edible left in their apartment.

"You would have just cried if you saw it."

CALLED POLICE

After finding the door open and no one home at the children's 14th-floor apartment, Higgins called police and the Children's Aid Society.

The children's mother moved in two weeks ago and had already wrecked the renovated suite, the superintendent said.

"It was gorgeous in there when we gave it to her," she said. "Now there's beer bottles from one end to the other."

Staff-Sgt. Bruce Johnston, of 13 Division, said the children's mother is a well-known drug user, who is now facing two charges of child abandonment, two charges of failing to provide the necessities of life and one of obstructing police.

When officers picked her up, Johnston said, "she exposes herself and shows them the hysterectomy scar she has and says she can't possibly have children."

Later she admitted she is the tots' mom but said she left them with a sitter.

The kids were seized by CAS and are now with their grandmother.

Copyright © 2002, Canoe, a division of Netgraphe Inc.