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July 11th, 2012
03:51 PM ET

Official: Mom leaves mentally disabled daughter at bar, refuses to retrieve her

By Jack Maddox, CNN

(CNN) - An Illinois woman who left her mentally disabled daughter outside a Tennessee bar cannot be charged with a crime, police said Tuesday.

Police in Caryville, Tennessee, said the daughter is 19 and not assigned to a legal guardian.

"As terrible as it is, unfortunately there is nothing we can do," Assistant Police Chief Stephanie Smith 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."

According to police, Eva Cameron stopped at the Big Orange Bar in Caryville on June 28 when her daughter, Lynn, needed to use the restroom.

The mother left Lynn by the side of the road and returned to her home in Algonquin, Illinois, according to Smith.

"(Lynn) 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," Smith said.

Eva Cameron told the Northwest Herald newspaper in Illinois that she brought Lynn to Caryville because of its concentration of Baptists and because Tennessee has the "No. 1 health care system in the United States of America."

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Filed under: Disabilities • Family • How we live