Vero Beach woman leaves infant in car while shoplifting at Publix

Woman leaves infant in car for nearly 1 hour while shoplifting at Publix in Vero Beach.
Woman leaves infant in car for nearly 1 hour while shoplifting at Publix in Vero Beach. Photo by Indian River County Sheriff's Office.

VERO BEACH, Florida – A 30-year-old woman was arrested after leaving her infant in her Chevy Blazer for almost 1 hour while she shopped inside Publix, according to the Indian River County Sheriff’s Office.

Sarah Jean Wilmoth, of Vero Beach, was arrested Saturday on a charge of Child Unattended in Vehicle in Excess of 15 minutes, Possession of Methamphetamine, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, and Shoplifting.

The incident occurred at Publix in Vero Beach, located at 4145 9th Street, where other shoppers called police about an infant crying hysterically, the report said.

“With the time it took for me to be dispatched to the call and the time it took to travel to the call, it can be determined that the child was left unattended for an excess of 1 hour,” the deputy said.

EMS was called to the scene while police had to break entry to the SUV. The baby was retrieved and EMS rendered any necessary aid.

Police ran the tag to identify the vehicle owner, then had Wilmoth paged to customer service inside Publix.

Wilmoth was placed under arrested and escorted to her vehicle, where she screamed “Oh my God! That’s my son!”

Wilmoth stated that she left her child in the SUV alone because he was sleeping at the time. When asked how long she thought the child was left unattended, she stated, “I don’t know, but I know it was too long,” according to the arrest affidavit.

As Wilmoth was placed under arrest, the deputy conducted a search and found a rocky substance and a crack pipe. The crack pipe was field tested positive for traces of cocaine, and the rocky substance was tested positive for Methamphetamine that was laced with cocaine, according to the report.

Also, hidden in her bra was Poo Pourri, Pink Nail Polish, Clear Nail Polish, and Facial Cream that was stolen from Publix.

Wilmoth was transported to the Indian River County Jail for processing.

DISCLAIMER: Arrests and mugshots were made public by complaint affidavits, arrest affidavits, and police reports. All persons arrested are innocent until proven guilty.

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About Scott Lee
Scott Lee is a columnist and reporter for Sebastian Daily. Scott moved to Indian River County in 2015 and has been writing for various publications for approximately 30 years. Currently, he writes part-time and manages a featured column about local businesses in Sebastian and Vero Beach.
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