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Metro mom arrested after children found wandering the street

OKLAHOMA CITY - A house of filth and children wandering the streets. Now, police said the mother is in jail.

Ladonna Cotton was arrested for child neglect after neighbors said her special needs son and 1-year-old were outside unsupervised.

“Two children being left alone to play outside; this was apparently not the first time,” said Sgt. Gary Knight.

When we knocked on the door to the house, those inside claimed they aren't familiar with the circumstances.

It was Sunday when neighbors noticed Cotton's two children wandering in the street of their southwest Oklahoma City neighborhood unsupervised for 20 minutes.

“There was absolutely no supervision going on; the kids were actually going out in the street. At one point, one of them actually laid down out on the street,” Knight said.

Neighbors were so concerned for the children's well-being they walked the kids home and knocked on the door. It took a while for someone to answer.

“The one who is 11 is apparently a special needs child, who really does not have the capabilities to take care of himself, much less a 1-year-old,” Knight said.

Police showed up asking Cotton what she was doing while her kids were outside; she told them she was giving the kids a bath. That was untrue; she later changed her story, saying she was cleaning the bathroom.

“The inside of the house was in a state of disarray, obviously not a safe environment for those two kids, particularly with the facts that they were going outside and playing in the roadway unable to care for themselves,” Knight said.

Police said the house was filthy with trash scattered everywhere.

Cotton told officers her kids get out all the time. She also allegedly made statements to police that it wasn't a big deal.

“There was no indication that the mother was doing anything to supervise these kids or keep them out of harm’s way,” Knight said.

Cotton was also arrested on a Lincoln County warrant for stealing.