Area woman charged after toddler wanders neighborhood alone

Mother faces endangering welfare of child

LEWISTOWN–Bridgette D. Gibson, 27, was charged Tuesday with one felony count endangering the welfare of a child, after several neighbors reported the woman’s two-year-old child was wandering McVeytown unclothed and unsupervised, according to court documents.

Gibson’s son was reportedly seen, either naked or in a diaper, walking by himself around various locations on August 13 and 15, according to court documents. An employee at a local grocery store reported that the child entered the store in his diaper on August 13 and two local restaurant employees reported seeing the child walking naked, outside on August 15 for approximately 10 minutes, first in a local funeral home parking lot, then at the local post office, according to court documents.

Two of Gibson’s neighbors also reported seeing the child walking alone, down the street and around the town square a month earlier, according to court documents. One neighbor reported blowing the horn of his car to get the child off of the road and that his wife took the child to Gibson’s residence, according to court documents. That same neighbor was at the post office on August 15 and told police that he drove slowly by the child when the child ran out in front of him. He ultimately took the child to Gibson’s residence, according to court documents. The neighbor reported knocking on the door for a long time, but nobody answered, then asked the child where his mother was to which the child reportedly responded that she was sleeping, according to court documents. The child reportedly went in to the residence and retrieved Gibson from her bedroom, according to court documents.

The neighbor’s wife also told police that the child often comes out of the front door onto the road and that Gibson’s boyfriend reportedly takes care of the child when he is at the residence, according to court documents.

Mifflin County Children and Youth Services further advised police that a Family Intervention Crisis Services employee was at Gibson’s residence on August 1 and that the child was outside by himself for six minutes before Gibson reportedly came out to look for him.

Police interviewed Gibson on August 15 and reported knocking on the door for five minutes before Gibson answered it, the child in-tow and still naked, according to court documents. Gibson reportedly advised police that she was in the restroom and didn’t hear the back door open that day, nor was she aware that the child had left the house on August 13, according to court documents. Gibson advised police that the child used to leave the residence through the front door, that a window lock was installed a month ago to prevent that but a lock had not yet been installed on the back door.

Gibson was arraigned before Magisterial District Judge Jack Miller and committed to Mifflin County Correctional Facility, unable to post the $25,000 bail set. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for August 22.

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