Police: Mom drove, texted with baby on lap

April 5, 2012 at 2:08 PM

TORRANCE, Calif., April 5 (UPI) -- A California mother was arrested for sending text messages with her 1-year-old baby sitting in her lap as she drove down a freeway, police say.

Torrance police also allege Shawndeeia Joann Bowen, 29, of Hawthorne and her 4-year-old daughter were not wearing seat belts and her 2-year-old son was in an unsecured car seat when she was pulled over Tuesday afternoon, the Los Angeles Daily News reported.

The three children were placed in protective custody and Bowen was jailed in lieu of $131,000 bail after being charged with suspicion of child endangerment, police said.

Bowen was pulled over on the San Diego Freeway after another motorist called police.

The newspaper said Los Angeles County Superior Court records revealed Bowen was on five years' probation after pleading no contest to a child abuse charge in 2010. The newspaper said California Department of Motor Vehicles and police records show Bowen has an extensive history of driving with a suspended license, traffic accidents and other vehicular violations.

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