Parma: Boy reunited with family after wandering streets

6:58 PM, Sep 18, 2012   |    comments
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PARMA -- A three-year-old is reunited with his father after spending hours wandering the streets of Parma.

A good samaritan brought the child to Parma Police after finding him barefoot and soaking wet in the rain just before 7 Tuesday morning.

Police have his mother 24-year-old Amanda Aleman in custody tonight. She's facing a child endangerment charge, and an outstanding warrant after she failed to show up for court for a seat belt violation.

It's a much different picture than her children's estranged father presents of Aleman as a good mom.

"No, I wasn't shocked. They like to open doors a lot and then lock them," said the boy's father Eric, who didn't want to share his last name.

Eric says his toddler son and twin brother are known to escape. So he's not surprised to hear the three year old Noah was found wandering near W. 44th and Grantwood Avenue, more than a half mile from his home early Tuesday.

"At 6:30, 6:45 in the morning, there's just not that much traffic out there. So fortunately, this kid didn't wander into the street or get hit or anything like that," said Det. Marty Compton.

The little boy was upbeat, but didn't talk to officers for hours. A neighbor recognized a photo released to local media on TV.

"They showed a picture of a missing boy and I'm like I know that boy! He lives next door. I don't know his name, I don't know the mother or anything," said Christine Benesh.

Police found Aleman sound asleep around 10 am.

"The front door was pretty much wide open. They knocked for several minutes. It took mom a period of time to even wake up and come to the door and let them in," said Compton.

Officers put Aleman in cuffs, and took her in with an outstanding warrant for failure to appear on a seat belt violation. She's also facing a misdemeanor child endangerment charge.

"We can document a three hour time period where the child was basically in our custody. And the child was wet enough that he had probably been out in the rain for even a significant time beyond that," said Compton.

"No, I don't believe that," said Eric of his child's mother. He doesn't think Aleman should face charges.
"She's a good mother, that's pretty much it."

But Parma police say the signs were there that Aleman didn't take necessary precautionary steps to keep the house secure, and child inside.

Compton says he hopes this educates other parents to put safety latches on their homes.

It's a parent's responsibility to make sure their child, especially at such a young age, can't just get out and walk away.

It's not clear when Aleman will be arraigned.


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