A Smithville woman who tried to flee on foot from law enforcement officers early Christmas eve morning, accompanied by her children, is now facing charges of child abuse and neglect for putting the youngsters lives at risk in the cold night air.
30 year old Elizabeth Rochelle Bradshaw of Halls Hollow Road is under a $20,000 bond on two counts of child abuse and neglect. She was already wanted for violation of probation and is under a $250 cash bond for that offense. Bradshaw will be in court on January 9.
Sheriff Patrick Ray told WJLE Tuesday morning that Bradshaw grabbed her children, a seven year old girl and a four year old boy, and fled into the woods after learning that deputies were on their way to investigate a domestic incident between Bradshaw and the father of the children, Royce Dwayne McCrary, who were at the home of the children's grandmother on Halls Hollow Road in the Holmes Creek area.
"We got a call at 1:30 a.m. to go to Halls Hollow Road for a domestic," said Sheriff Ray. " After the deputies arrived, they were told by family members that Bradshaw had run into the woods with her two young children. As the deputies started their search on foot, they found the seven year old child hiding behind a tree. The child said that when Bradshaw saw head lights of patrol cars coming into the driveway, she took off running with the four year old boy in her arms, leaving her (older child) behind. Bradshaw took the younger child and ran up a steep and heavily wooded hillside," he said. The older child was taken back to her grandmother's home nearby.
Sheriff Ray said members of the DeKalb County Rescue Squad were then called upon to assist in the ground search for Bradshaw and the younger child. An aerial search was also conducted by officials of the Tennessee Highway Patrol who brought in a helicopter.
Shortly after daybreak, Bradshaw and the child were spotted. "At around 7:30 a.m. the helicopter spotted Bradshaw and the small child sitting down on a wooded hillside. Deputies and rescue squad members retrieved the child from Bradshaw and took her into custody. When they were brought down off the hillside and out of the woods, Bradshaw and the child were treated by DeKalb EMS. Bradshaw claimed to have injured her knee," said Sheriff Ray. While Bradshaw and the child were wearing coats (the child had on a hoodie), the sheriff said authorities were concerned about their prolonged exposure to the 27 degree weather. Both Bradshaw and the boy were taken by EMS to DeKalb Community Hospital for further treatment.
Sheriff Ray said child protective services were contacted and took custody of both children.
The children's father, McCrary, was arrested by the sheriff's department. He has two violation of probation warrants against him. He is being held without bond. His address is Needles Court, Nashville.