Effingham Co. mother arrested after boy found wandering again - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Eden woman charged after boy found wandering

Calvin Peterson (Source: ECSO) Calvin Peterson (Source: ECSO)
Jessica Ekern  (Source: ECSO) Jessica Ekern (Source: ECSO)
EDEN, GA (WTOC) -

A mother is charged with child cruelty after her 3-year-old boy goes missing for the second time in a week. 

The Effingham County Sheriff's Office said a neighbor found Calvin Peterson wandering off of Bluff Drive.

Sheriff's deputies say a man driving through an intersection near Foxbow Farms in Effingham County saw Calvin Peterson and called their office.

"This is a case where this child was missing for two hours and the mom was not looking for the child and she did not call the sheriff's office," Ehsanipoor said. "It was becoming a pattern and it was nothing but a recipe for disaster when you have a 3 year old missing not just for a few minutes, but for a few hours."

Jessica Ekern was booked in the Effingham County Jail. Ehsanipoor said they will release more information later Friday, including her identity and charges.

The arrest comes after Calvin went missing on Tuesday afternoon and was found safe after a three-hour search. He was found deep in the woods in a briar patch behind his home.

Deputies say choppers from Savannah-Chatham Metro and Georgia State Patrol helped guide search crews.  

Peterson went missing about 8:30 a.m. Tuesday from his home. His mother had gone back to sleep after sending her older children to school.

She thought Calvin was sleeping as well, but deputies believe Calvin followed the two family dogs into the woods in his pajamas about 10:30 a.m.

Deputies' search began from the air and on the ground with K-9 bloodhounds and neighbors.

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