NORTH CAROLINA — A mom was charged with misdemeanor child abuse two months after her 3-year-old son fell to his death at a North Carolina airport, CNN affiliate WSOC reported.
The boy’s mother is expected to turn herself in this week on three charges of misdemeanor child abuse, according to the affiliate. The Charlotte-Mecklenburg police issued warrants for her on Tuesday.
“We went from saying this was an accident, to now saying that you’ve committed a crime,” her attorney Michael Greene told WSOC. He said they plan to fight the charges.
Jaiden Cowart was leaning against the glass part of an escalator near the baggage claim area at Charlotte Douglas International Airport, his mom told the affiliate. The family had just returned from a September trip to Florida. While his mom tried to pick up their luggage, Jaiden became caught in the handrail and was pulled up the escalator until he fell, she told WSOC.
The toddler was rushed to a nearby hospital where he later died.
Greene said he thinks that police are charging Jaiden’s mom because they believe she wasn’t supervising her children properly, the affiliate reported.
“She was caring for a 4-, 3- and 2-year-old and trying to arrange a ride back from the airport,” Greene told WSOC. “I’m here saying that she’s not guilty of misdemeanor child abuse.”
The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department and the Charlotte Douglas International Airport did not immediately respond to CNN’s requests for comment.
CNN has also reached out to Greene.