CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police cited a mother with child neglect after they say she left her baby with a stranger overnight.
The mother has been identified as 29-year-old Ya'kesha Patterson. Police say Patterson left her baby with a man at the Lakewood Manor Apartments in West Charlotte around 9 p.m. Thursday night.
The man said he didn't know Patterson and she never returned to get the baby. He notified police Friday morning.
"That's what broke my heart it was the baby, it was a couple of months old," said Oquesha Crawford.
Crawford lives in Lakewood Manor near the man who cared for the baby.
"He was scared, he was terrified, he didn't even know if the child was a boy or a girl because he didn't change the child all night long," she explained.
Police released pictures of the baby girl, who is now in DSS custody, in hopes of identifying her and her mother.
Patterson eventually came forward. Crawford said Patterson didn't live in her area, but she was a familiar face.
"I don't know who she is, but I've seen her by my trash can for the last couple of weeks with three small kids," she said
Crawford said she never saw any interaction between Patterson and her neighbor.
"There are two different stories going on, she's saying they are related and he's saying he never seen her before last night," she explained.
Crawford, a mother herself, says she can't believe another mother could abandon her child
"I'm just angry at her, because you're making moms on this side of town look like we don't care about our kids, when we watch them like a hawk over here and we're all a community, a little family over here," she declared.
DSS would not comment on the case. But police say they are investigating. The status of Patterson's other children is not clear.