Boy, 3, found wandering in street Thurs.

Father could face charges of endangering child

By FAITH HUFFMAN | News-Telegram News Editor

June 29, 2007 - Police anticipate filing child abandonment or endangerment charges against a 23-year-old man who apparently left his 3-year-old son at their apartment unsupervised Thursday morning.

The child was found wandering down Bill Bradford Road just before noon Thursday, and released to his mother later in the day.

Officers were first alerted at 11:25 a.m. Thursday that a small child was running in the street in the 400 block of Bill Bradford Road. Prior to officers' arrival, two motorists seeing the child nearing the Gilmer Street intersection stopped and asked him where he lived.

The preschooler pointed toward an apartment on Bill Bradford Road They took him to the apartment and stayed with him until police arrived.

Finding no adult in the apartment to take charge of the 3-year-old, police began questioning neighbors if they knew where the parents were or how to reach them. They learned the boy’s mother was thought to be employed at a Gilmer Street restaurant.

They contacted the restaurant, and the mother returned home. According to reports, she was perplexed as to why the child was alone. She said her son had been left in the care of his father Thursday morning, but wasn't sure where he husband had gone or why he left the child alone.

Child Protective Services personnel were contacted regarding the incident. The CPS investigator allowed the child to remain in his mother’s care, but noted that their agency would be conducting an investigation into the incident.

Officers filed an offense report of abandoning or endangering of a child, a state felony offense, against the father for abandoning the child, who as stipulated in the law is less than 15 years old, and instead of being taken to a designated emergency infant care provider was left alone, placing the child at risk of harm.

The 3-year-old's father had not been located nor had officer spoken to him regarding the allegation as of the time of the report.

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