Mother Abandons Mentally Disabled Daughter
(Courtesy: MGN Online)
By Jack Maddox
(CNN) — Eva Cameron was driving through Tennessee when her mentally disabled daughter Lynn needed to go to the bathroom.
Cameron stopped by a small rural bar and let her daughter out of the car before she drove off, returning to her home in Illinois — leaving Lynn by the side of the road, Caryville Assistant Police Chief Stephanie Smith told CNN.
Lynn’s identity was unknown until the Caryville Police received an anonymous tip on Monday, having released a picture and requested information from the public.
CNN managed to contact Eva Cameron briefly and she said, “We understand she lost her ID card and that’s how the situation has turned into what happened. She’s already an adult. I just have to leave it at that.”
She also told the Northwest Herald that she brought her there because it is a more Baptist area and has a great health care system.
The Caryville Police asked Eva Cameron to return to their office, but when she did so on Tuesday morning, she signed a statement saying that Lynn Cameron was now a ward of the state of Tennessee.
Smith described this morning’s 15-minute encounter with the mother: “She basically said, ‘I don’t want her and I don’t want to take her. Then she got in her car and she left.’ “
According to an Order from the Campbell County Chancery Court she stated, “She could not and would not care for Lynn Cameron.”
Lynn Cameron is 19 and is not signed to a legal guardian. There are no criminal charges that can be filed against Eva Cameron according to Smith.
“As terrible as it is, unfortunately there is nothing we can do,” she said. “There is no doubt we need a law for mental health rights but pending this investigation we just don’t know what else to do.”
“She didn’t know her age, she didn’t know her address, she didn’t know her phone number and she didn’t even know her name,” when dispatch found her abandoned by the Big Orange Bar said Smith.
Dispatch then took Lynn to a local hospital where she was evaluated by a doctor and discovered to only have a basic vocabulary of 30-40 words according Smith. The Campbell County Chancery Court Order describes Lynn as a “severely disabled adult, suffering from profound mental deficits, and is unable to care for herself or her personal needs.”
The Court ordered that all appropriate steps and measures be taken to provide for Lynn’s care and welfare, and she has since been placed at the Michael Dunn facility in Roane. The Caryville Police office is still exploring options
When asked how Lynn is currently doing at the new facility, Smith said, “Lynn is doing fantastic.”