Mother Arrested After Abandoning Her Toddler In A Grocery Store

Late Tuesday afternoon, a woman suspected of abandoning her 2-year-old daughter in a Riverside grocery store was arrested. She was recognized by a bank teller who saw the news reports.


Chiengkham Vilaysane, 31, was arrested after an intense search, she was last seen in a Food 4 Less supermarket on Sunday night.

According to Det. Paul Miranda of Riverside Police, Vilaysane, who also goes by “Cindy,” took her daughter with her to the grocery store in the 4000 block of Van Buren Boulevard. The little girl wandered off in the store and Vilaysane continued shopping and never searched for her.

The girl was then spotted by a good Samaritan who took her to her mother. Vilaysane didn’t take her daughter and responded “Oh, just leave her.” She then paid for her groceries and left her daughter behind.

The little girl was not reported missing, she’s currently in the custody of the Riverside County Department of Child Protective Services, according to Miranda. She appears to be in good health and showed no obvious signs of trauma “She is a little bit shaken up,” the detective added.

Police released surveillance video displaying Vilaysane in the grocery store with the girl on Monday night. They didn’t know her identity, but with the help of viewers, the woman was identified.

Vilaysane walked into a bank in Riverside about 5 p.m. The teller, recognized her and notified police.

Previous run-ins:

The woman has been recently kicked out of her family home. Officers took Vilaysane into custody, and she was detained on suspicion of child endangerment, child neglect, and being under the influence of controlled substances.

Miranda added that Vilaysane has had confrontations before with law enforcement for drug- and alcohol-related offenses and was previously placed on a 72-hour psychiatric hold.

The department has received overwhelming support from people interested in adopting the girl.