A Fort Pierce mother has been arrested on a child neglect charge after she left her 3-year-old son at a dollar store and returned for him more than an hour later, police said.
Philleana Peak, 30, was also arrested on a marijuana possession charge Tuesday.
Fort Pierce police said an employee at Deal$ Dollar Tree noticed the boy alone and crying in an aisle Tuesday night. After several attempts to search the store for his mother failed and nobody answered announcements on the public address system, police were called.
More than an hour later, Peak arrived with the boy's grandmother while police were at the store.
According to the arrest report, Peak told police she thought her son was in the minivan with her when she left the store, but she couldn't find him when she got home.
"She didn't have an explanation," Sgt. Dennis McKenna told WPBF 25 News' Ted White.
Police said Peak couldn't explain why it took her at least an hour to return and why she didn't call the store or 911.
"An hour appears to be a long time," McKenna said.