DUNCAN — A 2-year-old girl’s hang-up calls to 911 led to police finding her mother asleep and allegedly high on her sister’s medication.
The Stephens County District Court issued a felony arrest warrant Friday for Gloria Marie Menga, 32, of Duncan, for a felony charge of child neglect, court records indicate. The crime is punishable for up to life in prison and up to $5,000 fine. Due to state statutes, this is a crime that 85 percent of the sentence must be served before consideration for parole.
Duncan police began investigation shortly before 2 p.m. Thursday after emergency radio dispatch reported repeated 911 hang-up calls from 1722 Overland. According to the court affidavit, a small child was heard on the line.
Police Officer Bryan M. Eades said he arrived at the home, rang the doorbell but received no response. He began knocking on the door.
“A short time passed and I observed a 2-year-old white female open the curtains by the front door,” Eades said. “The child was naked and dirty with bruises on her face and legs. The child had a cord of some sort around her neck and was holding a pen and paper.”
The girl kept running off and coming back “in a playful manner,” the affidavit states. After finding the door unlocked, Eades’ commanding officer told him to go in due to the child’s safety and in thinking that there may be some sort of an emergency.
The officer conducted a walk-through the home and found no sign of anyone inside. After about 45 minutes, a woman was found asleep under blankets in the garage inside some sort of makeshift room made from rolls of plastic hanging from the ceiling, according to the affidavit. It was Menga, according to Eades. A DHS case worker arrived and assisted officers.
Menga said the girl was her daughter. Eades said she was “obviously under the influence of intoxicants” and was unsteady on her feet, off balance, had slight slurred speech, fixed pupils and was very lethargic. Menga said she’d taken a “football” Xanax prescribed to her sister and had gone to sleep after putting the girl down for a nap, the affidavit states. She couldn’t tell where she’d laid the girl down for the nap or when.
The girl was taken into custody and transported to Duncan Regional Hospital for a check-up. The affidavit states that she had several bruises and was “very dirty.”
“It appeared she had been wandering around the home eating Little Debbie snacks as there were two boxes on the floor torn open and numerous plastic wrappers throughout the house,” Eades said.
The girl’s father was called while he was at work. He came home immediately and was very upset about the situation, the affidavit states. He told police, “I’m so tired of this,” when he got home. He said Menga was a good mother but makes bad decisions.
As the father spoke with the DHS case worker, a car showed up with four children inside and he said they lived in the home with them, according to the affidavit.
During the interviews and investigation, Eades said that Menga fell asleep on the couch in the living room. She was awakened and told to find somewhere else to stay until Monday when DHS could further investigate the situation because the case workers didn’t feel it was safe to leave her in charge of the children. The children stayed with her husband and her sister picked her up and took her elsewhere.