Custody hearing set for 8 kids left alone

January 16, 2008 10:22:35 AM PST
A custody hearing is scheduled for today in the case of a mother accused of leaving eight children to fend for themselves while she traveled to Africa to get married. Six of the children belong to a woman who left them alone while she went off to get married in Nigeria. Two of the children found in the home were neighbor's kids.

CPS officials say that Shanell Mosley left to meet a man in Nigeria. Mosley told officials she made arrangements for her children, but so far the 33-year-old mother was a no-show at the court proceedings.

Authorities say she did leave for Nigeria on New Year's Eve in the hopes of marrying a man she reportedly met online. But the six children which she left behind were found in deplorable conditions with no adult supervision or money for food.

The oldest of Mosley's children, a 15-year-old daughter, was left behind in charge of all of her younger siblings. Children -- ages 1, 3, 4, 7, 8 and 9 -- were alone in the roach-infested home.

"Even if she made arrangements for an adult to be there, our concern also had to do with the home environment and what it looked like," said Estella Olguin with CPS. "The fact that it was infested with roaches and trash piled everywhere and really just too dangerous for a one-year-old to be in that type of situation."

The father of the one-year-old was in court this morning, but exactly what role he may have or what questions he may have from the judge remains unclear. Sources say there will unlikely be a ruling in this case today and the kids will probably remain in foster care.

In the meantime, Mosley is charged with one count of endangerment to a child and one count of abandonment.

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