Toddler found wandering outside Newberg apartment complex - KPTV - FOX 12

Toddler found wandering outside Newberg apartment complex

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Robert Smith Robert Smith
NEWBERG, OR (KPTV) -

Residents of an apartment complex were shocked when they found a toddler wandering around by herself wearing nothing but a sundress in Newberg.

Police said the 2-year-old girl was found around 7:15 p.m. Thursday outside the Woodside Park Apartments on East Ninth Street.

Investigators believe the girl had been wandering around for about 30 minutes to an hour before neighbors found her and gave her shelter.

Police said neighbors directed them to an apartment occupied by 58-year-old Gary Allen Smith, where the girl had been known to be on occasion.

Officers searched the apartment when no one came to the door, fearing that someone inside may have been injured. They found a pacifier on the floor but no sign on Smith.

Police said Smith eventually returned to the apartment and appeared to be intoxicated. Smith allegedly admitted he passed out while babysitting his granddaughter. When Smith woke up and couldn't find her he told police he went to his ex-wife's house to see if she had the toddler.

He then returned to his apartment complex to continue looking for her.

Police cited Smith with second-degree child neglect and the girl was returned to her parents.

The toddler's father, Robert Smith, said her grandpa would baby sit her about once or twice a week.

"The last thing I want is for my dad to look inconsiderate or irresponsible," said Robert Smith. "This is the first time. And my dad is a great guy and he loves her more than anything."

Robert Smith said he dropped his daughter off at his dad's house before he went to the coast with his girlfriend.

"I got home last night and told him that the drinking needed to stop," said Robert Smith. "I gave him a hug and told him that I loved him."

Robert Smith said he has never suspected his father of being drunk while babysitting his daughter in the past.

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