Newburgh woman slept with loaded gun, tot nearby, cops say

A Newburgh police SUV is shown in this

A Newburgh police SUV is shown in this file photo. (June 18, 2012) Photo Credit: Leslie Barbaro

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A Newburgh woman fell asleep with a loaded .40-caliber pistol about a foot from her 3 1/2-year-old son in a room that also contained an empty semiautomatic rifle and several loaded magazines, police said Tuesday.

Town of New Windsor police said they found the AR-15 rifle as well as an unloaded .22-caliber pistol with ammunition nearby after they were summoned to an apartment at Trafalgar Road by family members who said they could not contact the woman, Vaunasia Nelson, 20.

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Family members said they received a call from the toddler, who told them he could not wake his mother, according to police.

Nelson, of South William Street, was charged with criminal possession of a weapon, a felony; endangering the welfare of a child and reckless endangerment, both misdemeanors; and possession of marijuana.

Nelson was arrested and her son was turned over to family members, police said.

Nelson was remanded to Orange County Jail, officials said.

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Calls seeking information on Nelson's legal representation to police and the Town of New Windsor Court were not immediately returned.

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