A 21-year-old woman who was wanted for missing her sentencing hearing on a felony child abuse charge is back behind bars.
Officers from the Arizona Department of Public Safety arrested Abernathy in Mesa about 10:40 a.m. Thursday, and she was being held Friday in the Maricopa County Fourth Avenue Jail, according to jail records.
Samantha Abernathy, who left her two sons, ages 1 and 3, home alone about 2 a.m. June 14, pleaded guilty to one count of felony child abuse on Sept. 11 in Maricopa County Superior Court.
Abernathy was free on bail, and when she did not show up for her sentencing on Oct. 23, a warrant was issued for her arrest. Abernathy had not been checking in with the court and was not cooperating with Pre-Trial Services, the agency that keeps tabs on people who are free on bail, according to court records.
Abernathy was being held on $5,000 bond, and is scheduled to appear for a hearing on Nov. 5, according to jail records.
Under terms of the plea deal, Abernathy will be on probation for 16 years and spend up to a year in a county jail if the court chooses probation. The court also could send her to state prison for up to 18 months, according to state sentencing laws.
Neighbors called police about 7 a.m. to report that the children were wandering around the apartment complex at University Drive and Gilbert Road in Mesa.
When police arrived at the apartment, they discovered it in filthy conditions and the boys hungry. One of the children reached for dog food as police were investigating, according to police.