A mother of three was arrested in California after she was caught driving and texting with her 1-year-old baby in her lap.
Shawndeeia Bowen, 29, was pulled over recently by Torrance police after another driver saw Bowen driving on a freeway with an infant on her lap. The concerned citizen called 911 to report the dangerous act, KTLA reports.
Bowen still had her cell phone in hand and her baby was crying when cops pulled her over. However, she told police she pulled her infant from the backseat because it was necessary.
Bowen claimed she did in order to soothe her 1-year-old.
However, officers also discovered her 2-year-old son in an unsecured car seat, as well as Bowen's 4-year-old daughter not wearing a seat belt.
Bowen has been jailed under suspicion of child endangerment with bail set at $130,000. Her children have also been taken into custody by the Department of Children and Family Services.
Prior to her arrest, Bowen has had a string of other traffic citations on her driving record.
Since 2009, the mother of three has been cited for not wearing a seatbelt, driving with a suspended license, driving without insurance, driving without a license plate, disobeying traffic signals, and more. She has also been in two car accidents and failed to appear in court nine times.
But perhaps most damaging is that Bowen has been cited previously for not using child restraints.
Other than New Hampshire, every state requires the use of seatbelts while driving. In California, children under 6 or weighing less than sixty pounds must be secured in a child safety seat and placed in the rear seat when driving.
The mother accused of driving and texting with a baby in her lap may have a tough sentence awaiting her.
Mother Held on Suspicion of Texting While Driving With Baby in Lap (Los Angeles Times)
California Child Passenger Driving Laws (California Department of Motor Vehicles)
Seat Belt and Child Restraint State Laws (FindLaw)