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    Sunday, 26 November 2017

    Actress who was jailed 20 years ago for leaving her toddler outside a New York restaurant while she had dinner, speaks out!


    Actress who was jailed 20 years ago for leaving her toddler outside a New York restaurant while she had dinner, speaks out!
    Anette Sørensen was jailed by New York police 20 years ago for leaving her baby in a stroller outside a restaurant while she was dining inside. Now the Danish woman who made headlines in 1997 is speaking out about her ordeal in the hopes that her story will be told to an American audience.

    Actress who was jailed 20 years ago for leaving her toddler outside a New York restaurant while she had dinner, speaks out!
    Sørensen was a 30-year-old aspiring actress who returned to New York City in May 1997 from Copenhagen. She met up with Exavier Wardlaw, the biological father of her then-14-month-old daughter, Liv (seen with her mother in 1997 in the left photo). The couple decided to grab a drink at Dallas BBQ (inset) in Manhattan's East Village.

    Sørensen decided to leave Liv and her baby stroller outside the restaurant as she and Wardlaw were inside while keeping an eye on her from the window. That’s when diners and servers notified police, who arrested her for endangering a child. Her daughter was put in foster care for days. The city eventually dropped charges, but only after she was kept in jail and separated from her child

    Sørensen (seen with Liv in the present day in the center photo) said that the entire ordeal was a misunderstanding because parents in Denmark frequently leave their babies on the sidewalk while shopping or dining. 

    'I had lived in New York [during school], so, of course, I knew that I didn't see prams all over the city,' said Sørensen in an interview published Saturday.
    'But… I had been living in Copenhagen, I had given birth to my daughter in Copenhagen, I was raised myself in Denmark… That's just how you do it in Denmark.'

    Actress who was jailed 20 years ago for leaving her toddler outside a New York restaurant while she had dinner, speaks out!Actress who was jailed 20 years ago for leaving her toddler outside a New York restaurant while she had dinner, speaks out!

    The first time she woke up was when the officer took her out of the pram,' Sorensen told the Post.
    Sørensen said that the two police officers who initially arrived were going to allow her to leave with Liv.

    But then a third officer arrived and things changed.
    'I said, "I'm leaving now," and he said, "No, you're not: You're arrested,"' she said.
    'It was unreal... I did not break any kind of law. I never, ever thought this could happen.'
    The NYPD booked Sørensen and Wardlaw for child endangerment and disorderly conduct.
    She was placed in jail for 36 hours, while her daughter was put in foster care by the city's welfare services.
    'I didn't know where my child was,' said Sørensen.
    'I don't think there's any greater punishment than to have your child taken away from you.'
    Four days after she was arrested, Sørensen was finally reunited with Liv.
    She remained in New York for a few more weeks because of summonses to civil and criminal court.
    Charges against Sørensen were eventually dropped after she agreed to leave the United States. 
    The case made front-page news and generated headlines in the local press, which Sørensen says treated her unfairly.
    While the local media in America treated her as a negligent parent, the Danish press rose to her defense.
    'For every Dane it was a nightmare because we are used to living like that,' said Sørensen.
     
    Actress who was jailed 20 years ago for leaving her toddler outside a New York restaurant while she had dinner, speaks out!
    The charges against her were eventually dropped on condition that she leave the United States
     
     In 2012, Sørensen wrote a book about her experiences. She now wants to translate it into English, and she has launched a Kickstarter fund toward that end.

    The book, titled A Worm in the Apple, recounts the 'traumatizing' experience.
    ‘It’s about what happened before, what happened as it happened, and what happened after,' she said.
    The book is a chronicle of 'all the feelings, all of the thoughts that were going on at that time.
    'I always had a big longing for an apology. I probably never will get this apology [so] I want to give this [book] back.' 
    'It's a way of getting back what I never got,' said Sørensen. 'I would like [it] if I could just say what I think.'
    A year after the ordeal, she sued the city for $20million. She was awarded $66,400 by a civil jury, which found only that she should not have been strip-searched and that the city commonly failed to advise arrested foreigners of their right to notify their consulates.
    Sørensen now says she wants to show the American public that the Danish system of parenting is healthier.
    'People live in fear [in the US]. Children are not allowed to play in the playground alone,' said Sørensen.
    'That's why it's important for me now to get [my book] into English, to show it's possible to live another way.'
    Sørensen now lives in Hamburg, Germany with her husband, Mike, and their two teenage children.
    Liv, the baby in the stroller, is a 21-year-old woman living in Copenhagen, where she is studying design.   
     

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