NV - Pair who left sons may face charges

Discussion in 'Crimes-Spotlight on Children' started by mysteriew, Jan 4, 2006.

  1. mysteriew

    mysteriew A diamond in process

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    Investigators are waiting for a father and stepmother to return from Las Vegas after they left their two boys home alone over New Year's weekend -- and police say it is not the first time.
    San Ramon police are pursuing a criminal case against the couple, whose children, ages 5 and 9, were left at home with cereal, frozen meals and a cell phone number to call for emergencies, said Sgt. Brian Kalinowski.
    "What we are dealing with here is child endangerment, leaving children in what could potentially be a condition where (they) could come into harm," he said.
    The children were found Saturday after their maternal grandmother called police suspecting they were alone, said Sgt. Eric Webb. The older boy told police his parents left Friday and would return Wednesday. The younger brother suffers from a medical condition, but police would not elaborate.
    The boys were taken into custody by county Child Protective Services and then released to their grandmother. The boys' biological mother died a few years ago, investigators said.
    http://www.contracostatimes.com/mld/cctimes/news/local/crime_courts/13546106.htm
     
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  3. mssheila

    mssheila New Member

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    OH MY GOSH! 5 and 9???????? What on earth were they thinking? They just obviously didn't care. I dont leave my 5 and 6 year old to even go a block away for 2 minutes. I take them with me. I cannot even fathom this.... Inexcusable.
     
  4. SadieMae

    SadieMae Former Member

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    Snipped from the above newslink:

    "The 9-year-old told investigators he and his brother ate cereal for breakfast and frozen meals, which they heated in a microwave, for lunch and dinner. He also told police it was not the first time they had been left alone overnight.
    By law, there is no minimum age requirement for children to be left alone, but Kalinowski said it is a judgment call.

    "If you're dealing with a 16-year-old, that's one thing, but a 5- and 9-year-old, and the 5-year-old has a medical condition -- we don't know how you make that bridge," he said."

    I don't understand, there's no minimum age? As I recall, in TX a child under 14 can not be left alone. Poor kids! Why didn't they have the Grandmother keep them? I would never trust mine to be alone at home at that age for any amount of time. Just too many things could happen. Why was going to more important than spending that time with their kids? What's wrong with people? :doh:
     
  5. mssheila

    mssheila New Member

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    CPS must make decisions on whether the act of leaving these children alone is not right... great....

    Here are some links.

    http://www.nspcc.org.uk/html/home/needadvice/childrenathomealone.htm

    • Never leave a baby or very young child alone at home, whether asleep or awake, even for a few minutes. It doesn’t take long for unsupervised young children or babies to injure themselves.
    • Most children under thirteen should not be left for more than a short period.
    • No child under sixteen should be left overnight.
    http://nccic.acf.hhs.gov/poptopics/homealone.html

    Most States do not have regulations or laws about when a child is considered old enough to care for him/herself or to care for other children. Currently Illinois and Maryland have laws addressing this topic. States may have guidelines or recommendations. These guidelines are most often distributed through child protective services and are administered at the county level.
     
  6. Details

    Details Former Member

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    I remember that my mom had a 12 year old across the street who was mature enough to babysit the 4 of us at times (I don't think overnight, but for a few hours), and I think that was the age at which we were allowed to stay at home alone (add a few more years for when we could stay at home with our younger sisters).
     
  7. mssheila

    mssheila New Member

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    My oldest son is turning 7 in a month. I cannot fathom, even thinking ahead 2 years from now, leaving him alone overnight. Not in a million years. And in charge of a 4 year old? Holy cow! :eek:
     
  8. mssheila

    mssheila New Member

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    ooppss.. in charge of a 5 year old.... but the same point applies.
     
  9. Jeana (DP)

    Jeana (DP) Former Member

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    My oldest son is 13 years older than my next child. I NEVER left them alone together. First of all, it wasn't his responsibility. Secondly, I was left "babysitting" my younger sisters and I know it causes resentment. Nine years old is too young even to be home for a couple of hours alone in the afternoon. I can't imagine thinking that the child would be home alone at night, much less watching a younger child. :banghead:
     
  10. lcookster

    lcookster New Member

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    this story makes me rip-****. It is ridiculous that there is no legal age defined to be left home along. This is so incredibly sad but also makes me so incredibly pis*ed. So this isn't the first time that this has happened?? Thank God the Grandmother is on to the whole thing and is keeping tabs on them. This hits close to home because my mother used to leave me home alone if I was sick from school so she could go to work. This started in 1rst grade. I am sure she felt she didn't have a choice but I can tell you that it was lonely and also that I wouldn't have known what to do in case of any emergency. It was negligence plain and simple and so is this. Can you even imagine???? And they were going to be gone for 4-5 nights?????? This Dad deserves to lose custody permanently. And one of the things I picked up on was that the Dad returned ONE of SEVERAl calls to his cell phone?? This was the same cell number he left with his 9 year old 'in case of emergency.'??????? My blood pressure is going up every word I type.
     
  11. bertajo

    bertajo New Member

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    So, this is my first post, and I have been lurking for days. But, this one sent me over the edge! As a local, there are few tidbits I would like to add. The youngest son is autistic (as reported on KTVU.com), and he clearly requires a higher standard of care. Obviously, a 10-year-old needs a few more skills if expected to be the primary care provider for five days. This story is all over the local news this evening, and they are showing pictures of the family home. These are not people who appear to be facing financial challenges. The oldest son also spoke on TV, and he seems really sweet. These adults are two employed professionals, and I would suspect that their combined annual salary is pushing 6 figures. If they can afford two out-of state vacations in one year, they can afford a $50 a day teenager to hang out at their pad for a few days. While sacrifice might be a new concept for them, maybe they should consider only one vacation per year while budgeting for appropriate daycare. I am pleased to learn these two were both arrested for their negligence, and I enjoy knowing that their bond and lawyer fees will clearly impact their free-styling ways in the coming year. Good work parental figures!
     
  12. KatherineQ

    KatherineQ Former Member

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    The saddest part of this story, to me, is that the mother died a few years ago. She must be rolling over in her grave. *God help the motherless child*
     
  13. Jean

    Jean Former Member

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    bertajo--I am glad you came out of the lurk mode! This really is a sad story. I can't believe they had petsitters for their three dogs (mentioned in the article I am posting below), but no one to watch over their two children. I just can't understand how people could just leave two little kids to fend for themselves.

    Police arrest parents of kids left home alone

    Wed. 1/04/06
    Contra Costa Times

    http://www.contracostatimes.com/mld/cctimes/news/breaking_news/13550473.htm

    Investigators escorted Jacob Calero, 39, and Michelle Delavega, 32, from their America West flight.....

    They were held on suspicion of felony child endangerment in lieu of $200,000 bail each.

    Excerpts

    Police on Wednesday arrested a father and stepmother suspected of leaving their two young boys home alone over New Years weekend while their three dogs were cared for by petsitters.

    The 10-year-old said he knew his parents were leaving, but they didn't say good-bye. The boys awoke Friday morning to find their father and stepmother gone and no idea who, if anyone, might be by to check on them.

    The boys' grandmother called police about 11 p.m. Saturday night after growing concerned they were alone. Earlier that night, a neighbor had taken in the 5-year-old after hearing him screaming from inside his home's garage. Joshua, who had been at a friend's house for a few hours, later retrieved his younger brother from the neighbor's home, Kalinowski said.

    The boy' father is a plumber and Delavega, who is stepmother to the children, works in the dental field. The couple wed last spring.

    More at the above link....

    The article also states that the 10 year old was angry that they were left alone at home, and that he was responsible for the care of his brother. He would like to have gone on the trip with his parents.
     
  14. Details

    Details Former Member

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    Mad that he didn't get taken on the trip - precisely why they needed a sitter! He could have decided to take that out by not taking care of his younger brother (bad when even his best efforts might not be sufficient).

    I can't believe they got a petsitter - they could have left the dogs at home for a couple of days with food and water and access to the garage or other covering much better than leaving their kids in that situation!
     
  15. bertajo

    bertajo New Member

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    This story just keeps getting better, kids. Let’s review the timeline here…

    Friday 5:00am – parents leave home for Vegas vacation

    Saturday 11:00pm – officers retrieve children from home

    Monday – officers contact parents

    Tuesday – father refuses to respond to officers’ phone calls; father resumes counting chips

    Wednesday 11:00am – parents return to Oakland where they are arrested

    I hope they were enjoying the buffet at the Bellagio followed by a hot night of gambling because these stellar people are going to be enjoying the inmate special for a few days. Yummy!
     
  16. Kim Ii

    Kim Ii New Member

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    This story really hits home for me as San Ramon is right next to Danville, which is where we live.

    This couple just makes me sick. They're both professionals...dentists/cosmetic dentistry, believe it or not. What just broke my heart was the article in today's paper wherein the ten year old boy stated he thought his parents were supposed to love the boys more than the puppies. OMG...I just want to thrash this couple.

    I don't know what it is about this area, but we've encountered more stories from friends of ours out here of like situations...parents who like to party, drink hard and think nothing of leaving their children unattended. Friends of ours lived in a street just down from us and actually moved back to Chicago as they were so sickened with the behavior of their neighbors. (The daughter of one of this area's most wealthy of families was involved. Long story, but similar in many ways to the above sad story.)
     
  17. KatherineQ

    KatherineQ Former Member

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    The parents seem like such self-absorbed juveniles. Giving each other puppies for christmas, like high school teenagers would do, and then taking the puppies to be cared for by her mother over the long weekend. I wonder if the stepgrandmother asked, even like in passing, so where will the boys be while you're gone?

    And I just keep thinking of the deceased mother, who died of breast cancer, she must have been worried about what would become of her children her last several months.

    This story really seems to be striking a chord with a lot of people.
     
  18. Txmom

    Txmom New Member

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    These poor children. The father should be the protector of his children, but apparently the new wife is more important. This new relationship/marriage of his is going to cost him in more ways than one. And she, the new wife is clueless to what a mother is to be. She is not ready or up to being a mother of a child with a handicap. Best let the children go live with the grandmother and force the father to pay her a VERY good child support to help them live. Both boys are already suffering.
     
  19. JellyBean

    JellyBean New Member

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    I'm actually speechless.

    Those poor boys :(

    JellyBean
     
  20. Jean

    Jean Former Member

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    It doesn't sound to me like the father and stepmother want to be bothered with taking care of their children.

    Couple arrested in home alone case
    No one watched kids -- puppies got sitter, police say
    --San Francisco Chronicle 1/5/06

    http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2006/01/05/HOMEALONE.TMP

    Excerpts

    The boys' mother, Maria Cristina Calero, died of breast cancer in 2003 at the age of 31. Jacob Calero, a construction plumbing foreman, married De La Vega, a cosmetic dentist and owner of Genesis Aesthetic Dentistry in Santa Clara. Holden expressed outrage Wednesday that her grandsons had been left by themselves.

    "I'm upset at their poor judgment," said Holden, 60. "I feel like this is not a thing I would do myself. I believe that children are not only a blessing but also our responsibility."

    The couple left for Las Vegas on Friday. Holden said Calero had asked her to babysit the boys, but she was busy and could not. She grew concerned when she couldn't reach Calero on Saturday. She feared the boys were alone and called the police.
     
  21. Julie

    Julie Inactive

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    Geez as any parent knows you can't find a sitter, tough shit!! That means you stay at home!!
     

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