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Iowa Mother Leaves Children Unattended While Vacationing in Germany


A mother from a suburb of Johnston, Iowa is in jail right now. She decided to take a 12-day trip to Germany, leaving her four children home alone.

30-year-old Erin Macke has been charged on four counts of child endangerment along with one count of transferring a firearm to a person under the age of 21. Police said the firearm charge is due to the mother leaving a firearm at home within easy access of the children.

Police claim that the mother attempted to make arrangements for child care for the children but failed in these attempts. So, although she failed to make arrangements she left for her Germany vacation on September 20th. The children range in age from 6-years-old to the two oldest being   12-years-old with one middle child of age 7. One of the child’s Father’s received a phone call from his child the next day which lead him to tip off police of the children being left alone, Janet Wilweding a Johnston Police spokeswoman said on Friday.

Lt. Tyler Tompkins of Johnston Police spoke to a local television station KCCI saying that the baby sitter cancelled at the last minute, so instead of making other plans Macke left and put the two 12-year-olds in charge.

“They were concerned, they didn’t know, they were confused,” Lt. Tompkins stated. “I mean, we’re only talking about 12-year-olds being the adults here.”

On September 21st officers arrived at the residence to find the 4 children alone and unsupervised. They promptly called Iowa Human Services who took custody of the children to later release them into the custody of their relatives. Police then called the mother in Germany and demanded her return to face her charges.

She had originally planned to fly back to the states on Sunday but following the call from authorities she made her return on Thursday. Upon her return, the mother was arrested and according to Polk County Jail records, she remained in custody Friday.

The mother currently does not have a listing in court records of an attorney who could comment on her behalf.

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