FARMINGTON - The babysitter was hammered.

Police say 27-year-old Monica Wellito blew a .30 on a breath-alcohol test while babysitting her niece's 1- and 4-year-daughters Thursday.

Wellito, who faces charges of child abandonment for the incident, was given the test after the 1-year-old allegedly

went missing.

The child's brief disappearance she was in the care of another family member sparked an extensive search by law enforcement looking for the baby, Cpl. Kyle Dowdy said in a phone interview Thursday.

Several Farmington police units, the San Juan County Sheriff's helicopter and three Farmington Fire Department units, including the Swift Water Rescue Team, responded to search for the child.

The San Juan County Sheriff's helicopter unit was notified about 4:02 p.m. and launched four minutes later to assist in the search, a dispatch official said.

Police responded to the house located on South Bluffview in Farmington shortly after 3 p.m. and entered through an open door after a nearby neighbor spotted the 4-year-old playing outside unsupervised, according to the police report.

She approached the child and attempted to locate the

child's caretaker.

The neighbor yelled into the mobile home's windows but didn't get a response.

Officer George Waybenais reported he had a difficult time waking Wellito, and called paramedics. He finally was able to wake her by applying force to her pressure points several times.

She smelled strongly of alcohol, according to the police report.


Officers struggled to get information from the intoxicated woman about the identity of the 4-year-old girl. Wellito eventually mentioned there were two children at about the same time the 4-year-old mentioned her little sister being in an unfenced irrigation ditch, which was located about 15 feet from the trailer.

After the massive search ensued, Wellito mentioned the baby might be with her sister or brother, according to police records.

The children's mother, who returned from work during the search, reported to police that Wellito was supposed to be watching both girls.

"She added that she had spoken to Ms. Wellito before going to work and had told her not to drink any alcoholic beverages until after she got off work at 5 p.m.," according to the police report.

The child was eventually located in the care of another family member, who reported to police that Wellito asked them to take the baby and leave the 4-year-old.

Police, following a search of the home, discovered a 750 ml bottle of Crystal Palace Vodka that was nearly empty on the kitchen counter, an empty 375 ml bottle of Crystal Palace in the trash can and an empty six-pack of Smirnoff alcoholic drinks the floor in the living room, according to the police report.

Also found was a coffee cup that had a small amount of liquid, suspected to be vodka, on the end table next to where Wellito had passed out.

Wellito was booked at San Juan County Detention Center and held on a $10,000 bond.