MUNCIE, Ind. – An intoxicated Muncie mother locked herself outside her home with four children still asleep inside, police say.

Around 5 a.m. Saturday, a Muncie police officer arrived at a home on South Hackley Street after someone reported hearing a person banging on a door and yelling, “Let me in.”

The officer found 34-year-old Jasmine Cox “yelling and hitting the front window” of the home. Cox told the officer she didn’t have a way to get back inside and that children were in the house. She was “adamant” that she didn’t have her cellphone or keys.

Other officers located her phone near the front of the house. Her keys were near her vehicle, which had been parked to the west of the home. Investigators also noticed a bottle of tequila lying on the ground.

Cox “appeared to be intoxicated,” with her speech slurred and her balance unsteady, according to court documents. She mentioned multiple times that she had been drinking, police said. The results of a portable breathalyzer test showed she had a blood alcohol concentration of .249, more than three times the state’s legal limit of .08.

Officers told Cox they’d located her keys and asked for her permission to enter the residence. They found four children between the ages of 6 months and 8 years “safe and sleeping.”

Cox, who was handcuffed and placed in the back of a police car, gave police an inconsistent story. She first said she didn’t leave the children by themselves and then said she’d left for a few minutes to go to a gas station.

Police didn’t know if Cox had been drinking before she left the home or when she returned. They were unable to determine how long she’d been gone.

The children were placed in the care of a grandparent, according to court documents, while Cox was taken to the Delaware County Jail. Preliminary charges against her include four counts of neglect of a dependent.

In May 2022, Cox pleaded guilty in connection with a drunk driving and neglect case. She was sentenced to probation, according to court records.