How did a 2-year-old girl wander out of the house, walk seven blocks, and then into the southbound lanes of Routes 1 and 9? It happened Monday morning in Woodbridge, and the child was pronounced dead at the scene.
The roads were closed during the morning commute while authorities investigated the crash.
Somehow the baby girl, named Cecilia, got out of her next-door-neighbor's apartment where she had been overnight for a sleepover, and walked at least seven blocks alone along the highway.
We spoke to the girl's 23-year-old mother at the spot where the accident happened.
Michelle Charlesworth: "How can you explain ... we walked the distance ..."
Michelle Charlesworth: Monaque Cromwell, Victim's
Mother: "My child is very smart. She's not like the average 2-year-old. She just went to the doctor's Monday, and Dr. Alexander told my Aunt that she was advanced. She said things that she was doing right now was not of a normal 2-year-old. My daughter was very, very smart."
Michelle Charlesworth: "We're about seven blocks from where you live. How does a 2-year-old get out of a house, and walk all the way down the street, and then walk down next to a highway at 6:00 in the morning?"
Monaque Cromwell: "She knew ... she had enough sense to walk this far and not be in the street. She had to see something, or was thinking about something, that made her go onto the highway."
Cromwell says she works full time in a 3-11 p.m. shift, so the sleepover is part of an arrangement. The only thing her mother could think would have let the child out is if a screen door was left unlocked.
Police are still investigating.