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Woman accused of prostitution, child endangerment

A Tonawanda woman was charged with prostitution and child endangerment after offering herself for a paid sexual encounter, but also for bringing her 14-month-old child to the Amherst motel where she agreed to perform a sex act on an undercover officer, police say.

Ciara M. Steffen posted an ad for escort services on a classified advertisement website, and then negotiated a fee for a sex act, Amherst police said.

Steffen, 25, arrived at the hotel Wednesday with her 14-month-old and said she would leave the child in the bathroom while she engaged in the act, according to police.

After a brief struggle, Steffen was taken into custody and charged with endangering the welfare of a child, prostitution and resisting arrest. Erie County Child Protective Services also was contacted.

The Amherst police narcotics unit and the State Police Community Narcotics Enforcement Team handled the case. Steffen was being held for arraignment, Amherst police said.