Grandma Caught Drunk Driving With Toddler in Her Lap: Police

Police in Santa Rosa, California, say they arrested a woman who was driving intoxicated while she had her grandchild on her lap.

Officers had responded to calls by concerned members of the public about the way an SUV was being driven on Hoen Avenue, around 4 p.m. on Thursday afternoon.

When officers stopped the car, they found there was a child on the driver's lap. They also found a bottle of vodka in the vehicle.

Santa Rosa Police Department (SRPD) posted an image of the liquor alongside a statement detailing the calls from the public and what officers saw on arriving at the scene.

"SRPD officers responded to the area and stopped the SUV. They learned that Grandma (the driver) had just picked up her toddler grandchild to babysit. The child was not secured in a car seat and was sitting on Grandma's lap when the vehicle was stopped," the statement, posted on Facebook on Thursday, said.

"To make matters worse, after investigating, Grandma was found to be intoxicated at almost 4 times the legal blood alcohol limit to drive!"

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Police said that the woman, who has not been named, was taken to jail and booked for driving under the influence (DUI) and child endangerment charges. Police did not say how old the child was. The child was not injured in the incident.

"We hope Grandma can get some help and we are glad that nobody was injured. Thanks to the citizens who called 911 to report this incident. It could have been way worse," the SRPD statement added.

Underneath the police statement, a number of Facebook users posted comments of concern.

One said they had witnessed the woman driving "at a very, very slow speed" and "had her head resting on the driver's window and looked like she was falling asleep."

They also said they were relieved the child was okay.

Another post said: "Grandma definitely needs help and treatment. Thank you to the concerned citizens that helped prevent a tragedy."

Others also shared their relief that the situation did not end in injury. Some also expressed their belief the child should not be left in the care of the grandmother in future.

Another user wrote: "We can pray that she will get help and not shame her, we are all human and with all that is going on the past 18 months people are having a rough time. Not saying she is excused from her actions."

Newsweek has contacted SRPD for further comment.

A police cruiser
A police cruiser is shown in this illustrative image. Police in Santa Rosa say they arrested a woman who was driving intoxicated while her grandchild was on her lap. Joseph Prezioso/Getty Images