The small West Virginia town of St. Albans, just outside of Charleston, is home to some good police officers, the kind of people I call “The Good Guys”.
Among them is Sgt. Philip Bass.
A little after 4:00 AM Monday morning, staff at the local Kroger grocery store heard a baby crying and an adult yelling inside a locked bathroom. An employee alerted the police, who fortunately (or unfortunately) were already at the store, responding to a shoplifting call in which some moron was trying to steal a Christmas tree.
According to local ABC affiliate WCHS’s website, “St. Albans Police said the poor 14-month old baby girl got handed-off from different people, and ending-up in the care of its mother’s friend at 4 A.M. in the Kroger bathroom. What police found they told us, when they busted through the door, no baby should be exposed to.”
39-year-old Donnyell Harrison of Tornado had been locked in there about 20 minutes or more and yelling at the child who was crying.
“The lady let us in the bathroom and then we saw her, and this little baby, she was sitting in a buggy with a baby bottle of Dr. Pepper,” said Bass. “And she said, well I didn’t have anything else to give her! And I said, well you’re in Kroger!”
“Some obvious signs of drugs around. There were some pills, a lot of pills visible so,” said St. Albans P.D. Captain James Agee.
Harrison was arrested for possession with intent to deliver. The baby’s mother is already in the South Central Regional Jail for unrelated charges.
And this is where The Good Guys come in. This poor little baby, who was eventually placed in Child Protective Services, had no one in the world to take care of her until CPS personnel arrived. A Kanawha County sheriff’s deputy bought some small toys for the baby to play with, a member of the St. Albans Police Department bought some diapers and food, and Sgt. Bass, a father of three, took care of the little one for over four hours, until CPS was able to arrive.
The things in that last paragraph aren’t in these cop’s job description. Baby-sitting isn’t what they’re tasked to do. But being a good person did call them to step up. I’m sure it wasn’t terribly expensive to buy the toys, food and diapers. It wasn’t too difficult to care for the baby for several hours. But they did it. They saw another human being in need, and they did what they could to help.
The Good Guys are out there. Be one yourself. Let’s make it a Good Guys Merry Christmas!
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