The state’s attorney general has suspended criminal prosecution against a mother in Limassol, after a citizen took the woman’s young daughter to a police station saying she was found alone at a local park.
According to media reports, Attorney General George Savvides suspended on Wednesday the criminal prosecution against a 35-year-old mother in Limassol, who was arrested Sunday evening on child abandonment and endangerment charges after law enforcement officers found her three children without adult supervision earlier that morning.
Local media previously reported that a concerned citizen saw a 7-year-old girl playing unsupervised at a local neighbourhood playground on Sunday morning and took her to a police station, telling officers the parents were not around. Officers then went to the girl’s home where they found the child’s siblings, a 2-year-old baby and a 13-year-old boy who was left in charge.
Yiolitis said 'no mother should have to choose between going to work and leaving her young children home alone' adding women often resort to the latter option under desperate circumstances
It later emerged that the mother, described as a foreign national, was at work and was not able to arrange for a babysitter, according to local media, with social workers leaving the children with their paternal grandparents and arresting the mother in the evening after she came home from work. The mom appeared before a local judge the following morning, who released her on bail after setting a trial for December 15.
It was not fully clear whether the concerned citizen knew the family or whether the incident took place near the girl’s home, while police told Knews they could not provide details about the case or any individuals involved.
Justice Minister Emily Yiolitis, who took to social media on Monday to express support for the mother, said she was pleased after prosecution was suspended.
Yiolitis had initially written on Twitter that “no mother should have to choose between going to work and leaving her young children home alone,” adding that women often resort to that latter option under desperate circumstances.
The justice minister also said the state should and would offer support to the woman, praising in another tweet state officials for quickly handling the case.
“I hope reconciling work and motherhood will become a reality in our country,” Yiolitis wrote on Wednesday morning.
Earlier in the morning the attorney general’s office had announced on Twitter that Savvides and Deputy Attorney General Savvas Angelides decided to suspend prosecution after weighing all facts in the case including actions towards supporting the family in question.