Arrest Warrant Issued For Norman Mother Accused Of Leaving Toddler In Hot Car

Thursday, August 11th 2016, 10:35 pm
By: News 9

An arrest warrant is issued for a Norman mother accused of leaving her toddler in a hot car. Police say she sat inside a McDonald's for two hours so she could use the free Wi-Fi.

Witnesses told police the mother walked outside several times to check on her daughter and splashed cold water on her face. And police say the mother told officers this was not the first time she's left her daughter alone in the car.

By the time Norman Police arrived to the McDonald’s near 12th and Alameda, the toddler and her mother were gone. But for about two hours in the heat of June, police say a 20 month-old sat in the back seat with the windows down, and still in her car seat.

Court records show it was a concerned McDonald's customer who alerted police about the mother, 28-year-old Tarah Holness.

Witnesses noticed the mother sitting at a corner table inside for about two hours using the free Wi-Fi, meanwhile her daughter was still in the car.

Police say the car was parked in the direct sunlight with heat index averaging 90 degrees.

Holness allegedly left after someone in the restaurant confronted her about leaving her daughter outside.

A Norman police officer tracked down Holness to an apartment complex, about 10 minutes or so from the McDonald’s. He confronted her as she was pulling into the parking lot, questioning her about what witnesses had told him from the McDonald’s. Her reply, “she was doing the best she could.”

Holness is now wanted on a child neglect charge. She's yet to be arrested.

Police say they did not arrest the mother back in June, because they were waiting on surveillance video to back up witnesses’ stories.