Police: Drunk mom took toddler to bar, punched child and officer

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Mary Jane Carpenter

Mary Jane Carpenter

DES MOINES, Iowa — An Iowa mother is in custody after police say she was already drunk when she took her two-year-old daughter to a bar, according to WHO-TV.

Police say they responded to the area of Miss V’s Honky Tonk Island Bar at 1833 Hubbell Avenue just before 3:30 p.m. Wednesday after a call from a bartender about 25-year-old Mary Jane Carpenter.

Officials say Carpenter was intoxicated when she arrived at the bar with her child. While she drank at the bar, the toddler was running around and rolling on the dirty floor. Police say Carpenter brought the beverage she was drinking in with her, and was not served by the bartender.

The bartender became upset Carpenter wasn’t supervising her child and tried to talk to her about it. That’s when Carpenter slammed down her drink and began yelling obscenities.

Carpenter left the bar with the child and a witness followed her, concerned for the child’s safety. The bartender then called police.

The witness told police Carpenter ran west on Hubbell and was acting erratically when she abandoned her child in the stroller near East 18th and Grand, and ran down East 18th. The witness stayed with the child and Carpenter eventually returned before police arrived.

Officers say Carpenter was clearly under the influence of alcohol and perhaps another substance. She was taken into custody at that point without incident.

A breath test administered on scene yielded a blood alcohol content of .183. A partially full water bottle containing vodka was found in the child’s stroller.

Carpenter was allowed to comfort her child in the back of a police car while they waited for a family member to arrive to take care of the child. While in the police car Carpenter was able to get out of her handcuffs. When officers noticed they removed the child from the back seat and Carpenter became very upset. While trying to get the toddler back she punched the child and the officer in the face.

Carpenter was taken to the ground and cuffed again.

Police say she is facing charges of child endangerment, assault on a police officer, and public intoxication.

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