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A mum who put her teenage son in the boot of car for the drive to a coronavirus testing centre has been charged with child endangerment.
Sarah Beam, 41, put the 13-year-old in the car’s trunk because she didn’t want to catch Covid herself, according to police reports, before driving him to a drive-through coronavirus testing centre in Houston, Texas.
According to local news station KPRC, witnesses at Ken Pridgeon Stadium in north-eastern Houston heard strange noises coming form the rear of Beam’s vehicle as she pulled up to the tented testing area.
Bevin Gordon, the health services director at the site, asked Beam to open the car’s boot and then saw the the teenager lying down inside.
According to local reports, Beam explained that her son had tested positive for Covid-19 at home and she was taking him to the site for a test to confirm the diagnosis.
She said she had put the boy in the trunk of the car in order to ensure she wasn’t also exposed.
Beam was then told that she would not be given a Covid test until the child was removed from the trunk and placed in the back seat of the vehicle.
CCTV shows that Beam then complied with the request, but administrators at the testing centre had by this time called the police.
A statement from Cy-Fair ISD Police Department said: "CFPD was alerted that a child was in the trunk of a car at a drive-thru Covid-19 testing site earlier this week.
"Law enforcement conducted a full investigation, resulting in a warrant for arrest. Thankfully, the child was not harmed."
Sgt Richard Standifer, of the Texas Department of Public Safety, told local TV station KHOU 11 that if the car had been involve din a collision, the boy could have been seriously injured.
"I have never heard of somebody being put in a trunk because they tested positive for anything," he added.
Beam has been working as a teacher at Cypress Falls High School since 2011, according to Cy-Fair ISD. She is currently on administrative leave.
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