What would you do if you were driving along a road and saw a baby crawling across the street? Not a toddler, not a teenager, but a baby, out on its own.
You’d probably have the same initial reaction that Cory Cannon did.
Seeing a baby in the road is so unexpected that Cannon’s brain initially read the baby as a baby doll: Somehow that seemed more plausible — and a lot less horrible.
“I thought it was a toy or something until (the baby) moved,” he wrote, according to the Asbury Park Press.
When it registered as a helpless child, Cannon knew that he had to help the infant, but he also needed to photograph the scene in order to have some sort of backup for the authorities.
“I knew I needed to get some sort of proof and my GPS was open on my phone, so I used my work vehicle to slow down traffic behind me and took the pic as I was exiting the vehicle and halting oncoming cars.”
After getting the child out of immediate danger with the help of a neighbor, Cannon called the authorities. The neighbor, who recognized the child, took the baby back home, where mom and dad didn’t even know their baby had gone missing.
The child’s father began to apologize to Cannon. “Then he apologized to me, and I was thinking ‘you should really be apologizing to the baby,’ but I don’t want to judge,” he said.
Online commenters have been savage with their reprimands, though the neighbors and friends of the family insist that it was a mistake and extolled the good character of the parents.
“It’s devastating what people are saying on social media,” said an anonymous friend of the family. “I’m personally destroyed by this because I know the family.”
“We are all people of means,” a neighbor said. “If we felt there was a problem with the family, we would have gotten them the help they needed. We are a community that takes care of each other.”
Accidents happen: Even the most vigilant parents have learned this in the most devastating fashion. Fortunately for this little one, Cannon was able to step in at a crucial moment and prevent a tragedy.
Initially no arrests were made, but a week after the incident, Evgeniy Dorman, the baby’s father, surrendered himself. He faces neglect charges, according to Inside Edition.
Meanwhile, Cory Cannon has faced backlash because he took a photo, prompting some people to believe that he did nothing to help the child while taking the picture or wasted precious time. But, as he explained, he was in the process of going to the child, after slowing his vehicle to prevent other drivers from speeding by the baby.
Plus, as mentioned on a Chasing News panel, Cannon did the right thing in order to protect himself. If he’d simply shown up to the authorities with a baby he claimed he’d “rescued,” how many people might suspect he’d kidnapped instead? The photo was one of the only ways he could protect himself and his reputation.
At the end of the day, Cannon was a good Samaritan, and a negligent parent has been arrested. Best of all, though, a baby is safe.
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