A British toddler was found playing next to a busy road in Portugal after being abandoned by her “clearly drunk” parents.
The two-year-old’s parents, described as middle-class teachers on holiday, were found drinking in a bar 100 metres away.
Police officers found the hungry youngster - known only as Scarlet - in tears, being comforted by locals. The parents showed no concern for their daughter and became abusive when questioned, police said.
A local newspaper said they were so drunk they were unable to tell police Scarlet’s full name.
Officers fed the child soup and water in a cafe before taking her to a police station where she wolfed down a fish meal.
State prosecutors are considering whether to bring charges. A police spokesman said: “The girl was playing on her own right next to a dangerous busy road.
“Passers-by were obviously concerned for her safety because she was in a risky situation, so they took her and put her in a buggy.
“They called the police, and when we arrived she was crying in her buggy and was obviously hungry and thirsty. She was fed soup and water while we tracked down her parents, who were in a bar 100 metres away drinking.
“They were clearly very drunk and officers tried to speak to them in several languages but they refused to acknowledge the officers. Later they became very abusive to our officers and locals. The girl was taken to the police station, given some dry clothes because she was wet, and some more food. She ate very quickly.
“The parents were also taken to the police station but they were too drunk to speak properly. They showed absolutely no concern for her welfare so she was taken into care.
“She spent the night at an emergency centre for children and as far as I know she is still there.
“It is an extremely sad situation for the poor little girl. As far as we know she has no brothers and sisters.”
Scarlet was found in the village of Carcavelos, 15 miles west of the capital Lisbon, on Monday night.
Portuguese newspaper Diario de Noticias described the man and woman as “middle-class teachers”, aged 40 and 38, who were on holiday from the UK, and who were so drunk they were unable to tell police their daughter’s full name.
However, another newspaper said they lived in Carcavelos and worked as teachers in Lisbon.
The parents were drinking in a cafe called Manhas do Chocolate, in a tree-lined square in Carcavelos. A two-way road runs through the square, which is dotted with cafes and restaurants on its cobbled pavements.
A manager at the cafe said the couple had drunk at least three glasses of white wine from 5pm until the police arrived. But she contradicted the police account, saying the girl was with her parents when officers arrived.
The manager, who did not want to be named, said: “I arrived at work at around 7.30pm and the couple were already sat here at a table on the pavement outside the cafe.
“The mother looked completely out of it and the father also looked very strange. I don’t drink so I can’t swear they were drunk, but they certainly didn’t seem normal.
“The mother was incapable of standing up. The child was very impatient, crying. I was told there had been an incident earlier when the girl had got out of her pram and somehow run towards the road.
“A man had grabbed hold of her to stop her running into traffic. A client at a neighbouring cafe called police.” - Daily Mail