Toddler found wandering highway in Sandstone, Minn. - KMSP-TV

Toddler wanders Sandstone highway; daycare provider fails sobriety tests

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A nearly 2-year-old girl was found wandering along Highway 23 in Sandstone, Minn., on Wednesday after wandering away from a daycare provider who was apparently drunk and oblivious to the toddler's disappearance.

Pine County Sheriff Robin Cole confirmed the toddler was found at about 3:30 p.m. Wednesday by a woman who ran from her home, picked up the child and called police. Cole said multiple cars swerved to avoid the girl as she walked down the white line on the side of Highway 23.

When Sandstone police officers inquired with a nearby home daycare, they found a woman who appeared to be drunk while caring for 10 children. When the woman counted the children in her care for police, she realized only nine were present.

Cole said the provider failed sobriety tests and the door to the playground fence around the daycare's yard, which was typically secured with a bungee cord, was also find wide open.

Police shut down the daycare and prosecutors are considering charges against the owner, who is not being identified at this time. Charges are expected Friday.

The toddler's father told FOX 9 News his daughter has not yet turned two and had only been cared for at the daycare for about a month prior to the incident.

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