WATERVILLE — A toddler wearing only diapers found screaming on a Silver Street porch Monday morning was rescued by police and returned to his babysitter.

A woman who lives across the street heard the 2-year-old boy’s screams and called police at 8:46 a.m., according to Deputy Chief Charles Rumsey.

Officer Todd Burbank brought the toddler to the police station, where he was cared for by Judy LaPlante, the department’s records clerk, Rumsey said.

Sgt. Dan Goss and officers canvassed the neighborhood, looking for the parents or caretakers of the child. They took into consideration that the parent or caretaker may have had a medical problem, so it was a stressful situation, Rumsey said.

Armed with a photo of the toddler, Goss started knocking on doors, Rumsey said.

“As he was doing that, he was approached by a woman who turned out to be the aunt of the 2-year-old who was baby-sitting him and a number of other children in her home,” Rumsey said. “She realized he was gone and came out to find him.”

Goss reported at 9:34 a.m. that he was in contact with the aunt, Rumsey said.

The woman lives in an apartment a couple of doors down from where the toddler was found at 48 Silver St. It appeared that the toddler got out when someone else was dropping off a child at the aunt’s home, Rumsey said.

He said she was very distraught that the boy had disappeared.

Rumsey said it didn’t appear the child got out because of negligence, so he was returned to the aunt and no charges will be filed.

Forty-eight minutes elapsed between the time police got the call and the aunt came forward.

“We’re glad it had a happy ending,” Rumsey said.

Waterville police have dealt with at least three similar cases in the past year, one involving a child who lived farther south on Silver Street and was found wandering near Grove Street, and another child who was twice found wandering downtown. In those cases, the children were returned to their families.

Winslow police last week dealt with a case involving a toddler found wandering on Benton Avenue. That child also was returned to a parent.

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