Last week’s most salacious public safety story in Rochester — and a fair distance beyond — probably was the one about Tasha Schleicher, 40, accused of driving drunk with several children in her car.
A Rochester woman with five children — ages 9 to a nursing infant — in the car was arrested …
In addition to the kids in the car, there were several more at the family’s home in southeast Rochester. Schleicher was raising 10 children.
She swerved several times down the highway, the report says, and one of the responding officers claimed she was nursing her newborn when he arrived.
So why in the world would Schleicher’s neighbors call her “a very good person” and bristle at the idea that she’s a bad mother?
For her part, Schleicher denies nursing her baby at any point in the incident and said she swerved because her tire blew out. The off-duty officer who first approached her was in his own vehicle and reportedly didn’t have his badge.
She doesn’t, however, deny drinking alcohol.
Still, said a neighbor who didn’t want her name used, “You can’t put all the blame on her. We did our best to support her — you could see she was struggling.”
Their kids played together, the neighbor said, and Schleicher shared her concern about a couple of her children’s behavior.
“I could not believe the lack of support for her,” the woman said. “There was nothing from social services, no mental health or chemical dependency support.”
Another neighbor said they’d had “no issues, no complaints” about Schleicher’s family in the short time they’d lived there.