Mother pleads not guilty to neglect

GREENFIELD — A New Palestine mother charged with neglect after her young daughter was found wandering alone through the family’s neighborhood was jailed and appeared before a judge Monday to plead not guilty.

Angel Pennington, 21, 5186 W. Blue Bell Drive, was in jail for about 90 minutes Monday before being released without bond, despite prosecutors’ requests that one be put in place, officials said.

In August, Pennington’s 23-month-old daughter was found walking alone in the Gem Meadows subdivision in New Palestine.

Neighbors called 911 after seeing a child in the front yard of a home in the subdivision near the intersection of county roads 500W and 100S.

After canvassing the area to find the girl’s family, police determined the child was in her own front yard. Officers had knocked on the front door once but moved on when no one answered. They returned about an hour later, knocking and calling out again, and Pennington eventually came to the door, according to court documents.

Pennington told police she didn’t realize the girl was gone. She told investigators she’d checked on her daughter at about 3:20 p.m.; dispatchers received the 911 call about the unattended child at about 2:50 p.m., court documents state. The child and her sibling were removed from Pennington’s care.

Pennington faces one Level 6 felony count of neglect of a dependent in Hancock County Superior Court 1. The charge carries a penalty of six months to two and a half years and up to $10,000 in fines.

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Caitlin VanOverberghe is a reporter at the Greenfield Daily Reporter. She can be reached at 317-477-3237 or