Palm Coast, FL – A woman driving down Pine Grove Drive stops her car after she says she found “babies” in the middle of the street, playing with garbage.
That’s according to the narrative given to the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office by 79-year-old Palm Coast woman, who found the kids.
She said she was driving down the street yesterday morning (September 10th) when she saw the two children, a one-year-old boy and a four-year-old boy, playing around with garbage while one of them held a metal can.
Since the children were outside of one of the residences there, she assumed that they lived there. The woman took the kids and tried to make contact with someone at the residence. When no one answered the door she went inside and began knocking on the interior doors to see if someone was inside.
At some point, while the woman was with the children, another witness stopped by to help out while she called law enforcement.
Deputies eventually arrived on scene and tried to call every number associated to the residence, but the numbers either did not work or no one answered the phone.
Not long after, a female, later identified as the mother and 36-year-old Patty Blackley, arrived at the residence. She told deputies that she had a meeting at Wadsworth Elementary in reference to an incident involving another one of her kids the week prior. She said she left her other two kids with a babysitter.
Deputies noted in their report that Blackley seemed to show no emotion towards the fact that law enforcement was at her residence and that her children were left unattended as they played in the street.
In the report, it says that Blackley confirmed multiple times that she left the kids with a babysitter that morning and wrote in her sworn written statement that a caregiver was there.
Blackley further told deputies that the sitter’s name was Latoya, but she didn’t know her last name. She was, however, able to provide a phone number.
She then said the babysitter is the niece of her friend “Latoya” and that she arranges for the babysitter through her friend. Deputies were able to get the last name from Facebook and track down Latoya to their home.
Once law enforcement met with Latoya, she told deputies that Blackley had just called her and said that she had to go to the school and left her other two kids at home. She also advised that during the conversation, Blackley told her that she could go to jail for neglect.
Latoya told deputies that her niece babysat once for Blackley in the past. Her niece, however, is a Flagler Palm Coast High School student and was in class at the time so there was no way she could babysit for Blackley.
Deputies eventually returned to Blackley’s residence, where they informed her about the conversation they had with Latoya. Law enforcement also found out that Blackey’s meeting at Wadsworth Elementary was scheduled the previous Friday (September 6th) and she had plenty of time to arrange for childcare.
Blackley was then arrested and charged with child neglect and providing false information to law enforcement. Jail records show that she is no longer in custody.