Mom charged after special needs child reported wandering in street

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BRADENTON, FL. - A Bradenton mother was arrested Tuesday on child neglect charges after neighbors reported her 3-year-old child wandering unattended.

It happened around 5pm in the 3400 block of 31st Street West in Bradenton.

According to the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office, neighbors saw the 3-year-old, a special needs child, wandering in the street and called the sheriff’s office.

Responding deputies contacted the child’s mother at the home and were “overwhelmed” by the odor of marijuana coming from the home. They say the mother had bloodshot eyes and was “somewhat lethargic”.

A drug test administered by Child Protective Services came up positive for marijuana. The mother, 23-year-old Ashley Nitz, was arrested and the child was taken into custody by CPS.

Nitz told deputies that she has a double key lock on the door, but had forgotten to lock it when she went to sleep.