A 26-year-old Oak Park Heights woman was charged by the Washington County Attorney's Office with child endangerment after she allegedly locked her 4-year-old child out of the house last week wearing only a T-shirt and a diaper.
Oak Park Heights police were called to a home in the 14600 block of 62nd Street North just after 8 a.m. Dec. 2, for a complaint that a child was locked out of the house and his mother was screaming that she did not want the child in the home.
When police arrived, neighbors told officers that they found the child outside after receiving a telephone call from the father—who was at towrk at the time of the report—asking them to go check on his children.
Amber Lynn Viellieux allegedly left the child outside when the temperature was 34 degrees. The neighbors told police when they went outside they saw the child standing at the sidewalk at the bottom of the stairs, crying and shivering.
The neighbors wrapped the child in a comforter to warm him up and he was very scared as to what was happening, the complaint states.
The child was “very frightened and would not speak to the officer, which was unusual from his past interaction with the child,” the complaint states. The neighbors also told police there was a 3-year-old child still in the apartment with Viellieux and expressed concern for the child's safety.
Neighbors also told police they heard Viellieux swearing at the children and telling them that she hates them and did not want them around.
When police spoke with Viellieux she blamed the children’s father for not being at home, the complaint states. When police told Viellieux she was under arrest for child endangerment she allegedly grabbed the 3-year-old child, “tightly in a bear hug” and would not let him go.
The officers had to use force to place Viellieux into custody and take control of the child, the complaint states. Viellieux reportedly became belligerent with officers and resisted arrest.
The children were taken in by neighbors until their father arrived.
Viellieux was charged with child endangerment, neglect and resisting arrest.
The children’s father told the Pioneer Press the incident was blown out of proportion.
"She takes very good care of the kids," the children’s father told the Pioneer Press. "She does what she's supposed to. But it was all the stress. ... She's trying as hard as she can."