Local News

Police: NC mom left kids in car while playing sweepstakes

Posted July 7

Shaneisha Smith

— A Halifax County mother faces child abuse charges after she left two young children in her car outside a Scotland Neck convenience store while she was inside playing internet sweepstakes games, police said Friday.

Shaneisha Smith of Hobgood was charged with two counts of misdemeanor child abuse and was released on a $6,000 bond.

Someone reported two children alone inside a locked car outside Daughtridge Gas Co. at about 3:40 p.m. Thursday, and Scotland Neck police officers found a 1-year-old and an infant in the back seat. Police said the car's engine was running, but the doors were locked and no one else was around the vehicle.

Officers found the children's mother inside playing sweepstakes games, police said, adding that security video shows the children were in the car, which was in direct sunlight, for at least 40 minutes.

The children appeared healthy and alert and were left in the care of a family member, police said. Halifax County Department of Social Services workers are investigating the incident.


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  • Sara Hauser Jul 8, 4:20 p.m.
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    This should be a felony. These children could have died! 6,000$ bond is ridiculous.

  • Rebecca Dawson Jul 8, 1:32 p.m.
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    This shows what her priorities are. She should be required to attend classes on parenting and gambling support since "sweepstakes" are more important than a child's life.

  • Benjamin Kite Jul 7, 8:12 p.m.
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    The sad part of the story is that she is the role model of two future adults. Apples who will not fall far from the tree. Grown-ups who are statistically predisposed to neglect their own future brood, and the cycle goes on.

  • Andy Jackson Jul 7, 6:50 p.m.
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    Another bright bulb....she does not deserve to have children if she is this irresponsible.

  • Mark Card Jul 7, 12:30 p.m.
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    There is also the risk of the vehicle catching fire too.