• Report: Woman left toddlers alone to buy gift wrap

    By: Mike Petchenik


    ALPHARETTA, Ga. - An Alpharetta woman faces charges after police said she left two young children home alone while she went shopping.

    According to an arrest report obtained by Channel 2's Mike Petchenik, Patricia Schmitt, 47, left the 15-month-old twins home Friday so she could buy gift wrap.

    Police came to the house after an anonymous 911 call, the report said, and an officer found the home unlocked with the two children in cribs upstairs.

    According to the report, Schmitt told officers she routinely left the kids home alone and asked a neighbor to check in on them from time to time.

    The report said a Department of Family and Children's Services investigator told officers the agency had received a similar complaint the day before.

    "Neither parent had a reasonable explanation for why they would leave the children unattended and the house unlocked," the report stated.

    A woman who answered the door at Schmitt's Brooke Forest Run Court home said she would have "no comment," then later asked for a card so an attorney could provide a statement. As of Monday afternoon, no statement had been received.

    Neighbors told Petchenik they were surprised to hear of the allegations.

    "These things never happen around here," said Al Hooshiari. "I think that's dangerous. You need to take care of your kids' welfare."

    Neighbor Allie Burns told Petchenik she once babysat for Schmitt and had no reason to believe she'd be reckless with her children.

    "I would have never thought anything was wrong with the situation at the house," said Burns. "She seems nice. She's always walking around here with her children. They're always playing outside."

    Schmitt was booked into jail Friday and released Saturday on a $5,000 surety bond, according to online records. She's facing reckless conduct charges.

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