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Prosecutors filed charges today against a Richmond woman who allegedly abandoned her toddler behind a housing complex in San Pablo on Wednesday morning. Saundra Samuel, 40, was charged with felony child endangerment and felony abandonment of a child under 14 years old. According to police, a resident of an apartment complex in the 2800 block of Valencia Way called at about 8 a.m. Wednesday and said he had just seen a woman carry a child to a common area behind the apartment complex and put him on the ground. He then saw the woman run to a taxi, which drove her away. Police found the child, an 18-month-old boy, unharmed and placed him in protective custody, San Pablo police Sgt. Dave Lewellyn said. He said there were no signs that the boy suffered any prior abuse. At about 6:30 a.m. Thursday, Samuel was allegedly watching the news on TV and saw a report on her case, Lewellyn said. She walked from her home in Richmond to San Pablo and called police, he said. Officers picked her up and took her to the police station, where she allegedly told them that she had left her son because she felt that she was not fit to care for him and believed that somebody else could provide better care, Lewellyn said. She was arrested and booked into county jail in Martinez on $20,000 bail. She is scheduled to be arraigned Monday morning in Contra Costa County Superior Court in Richmond.
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