N E W S   2 - W G R Z . C O M

Lawyer Explains Why Mother Left Son On Roadside

Posted by:  Aaron Saykin, Reporter  
Created: 8/24/2005 10:04:08 PM
Updated: 8/24/2005 11:01:50 PM

The lawyer of Michigan mother accused of leaving her five-year-old son on the side of a busy Grand Island road says there's an explanation for what happened.

Judith Andrews, 55, said nothing as authorities escorted her into court Wednesday evening. This was her second hearing since her arrest Sunday. She’s accused of leaving her adopted son on the side of a busy road, pulling over twice to let him catch up, only to pull away before he could.

For the first time, her lawyer tried to explain why.

"I don't know that if, on the night, in the state she was in, she could fully comprehend what her actions were," said Michael D'Amico, her lawyer.

D’Amico told a judge that Andrews was diagnosed with bi-polar disorder at age 20, and recently stopped taking her medication.

Reporter: "Wouldn't that make her, though, in some ways, an unfit mother?"
D’Amico: "She can take care of herself. She's been able to take care of herself. And she's been able to take care of the child, for the better part of the five years of his life. So, I disagree with you."

A Grand Island judge reduced her bail from $15,000 to $5,000. D’Amico says Andrews will be able to post bond by Thursday.

Child Protective Services sent her son to stay with her brother in Michigan. For the time being, Andrews cannot see him without permission from a judge.

We tried to ask Andrews, as she exited court, if she would try to see her son again, but she left just as she entered – silently.

Reporter: "Are you worried she may try this again?"
D’Amico: "No. I'm not. I think she's learned. I don't think she's ever been in jail before. I think she's realized that she has a disease that she needs to take care of."

Andrews had previously been charged with a felony, but it was reduced to a misdemeanor Wednesday evening. The prosecutor would not explain why. If convicted, Andrews could still face jail time. She's due back in court in three weeks.