A THREE-year-old was found wandering the streets with a soiled nappy and covered in dirt after being left home alone.
The little girl unlocked the door with a spare key and walked to a local shop in her pyjamas, Livingston Sheriff Court heard.
Lindsey Armstrong, prosecuting, said a member of the public spotted the child alone in Whitburn on Monday, July 22.
The mother – who can’t be named for legal reasons – called police and reported her daughter missing after she came home from work – five hours after she left the child alone.
She thought it was safe to lock the girl in the flat after her child carer failed to turn up.
The mum appeared for sentence yesterday after earlier pleading guilty to child neglect and was handed a Community Payback Order under which she will be supervised by social workers for 12 months.
Sheriff Donald Ferguson told the woman: “This is a serious matter and it could have ended up an absolute tragedy.”