Police officer accused of leaving child with mental health issues unattended outside facility

(AP images)
Published: May. 18, 2022 at 5:03 PM EDT
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COVINGTON, Va. (WDBJ) - State Senator Creigh Deeds (D-25) is looking into a report of a child with mental health issues being transported from Alleghany Hospital in Covington and left alone at the doorstep of a mental health facility more than 70 miles away.

In an email sent to the Senator, a woman who works at the Commonwealth Center for Adolescents and Teens in Staunton said the child was taken by a Covington police officer from the hospital and taken to the center in Staunton. The employee said in the email the officer left the child unattended at the facility at 5:30 in the morning while it was still dark.

Senator Deeds has confirmed with the Virginia Behavioral Health Commissioner that some details in the email are true and his office is looking into it.

“I am quite concerned about the reports of a child being left alone at the Commonwealth Center in Staunton. This was certainly not in the interest of the child and I am seeking an explanation for what happened,” said the Senator.

WDBJ has reached out to the Covington Police chief for a response, and did hear from the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services, which sent the following statement:

“An incident occurred over the weekend where a child was dropped off at CCCA in a very unsafe manner. We understand the incident is being investigated by the Covington Police Department and we will assist in this investigation in any way possible. Importantly, the child is now safe and receiving treatment.”

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