A 4-year-old was found alone on the side of the road crying in Immokalee on Thursday night after deputies say he was left in the care of a 12-year-old neighbor.
Someone called 911 around 5:30 p.m. and said that the boy was alone, but the boy said that he lived nearby, according to Collier County Sheriff’s Office.
When deputies arrived, people were surrounding the child who was crying.
Documents show that deputies made contact with the parents Andres Ramirez Marcos, 26, and Petrona Jacinto Macros, 28. The mother of the boy said that she and her husband went to the La Mexican grocery store on 217 N. 15th street to buy groceries and that the boy was in the care of the 12-year-old boy.
After asking for the date of birth of the 4-year-old. The father gave three different dates of birth for the boy and was unable to provide his actual date of birth. The father was asked to make contact with a neighbor and her 3-year-old son who arrived at the residence shortly after.
According to documents, the neighbor stated that the 4-year-old was at her house alone. She never had any indication from the parents that she was supposed to care for the boy. She cooked and fed the child and sent him back home. She doesn’t know if the parents were home when the child left her house.
DCF was called due to the story the parents gave. The landlord arrived and stated that he always told the parents that needed to take better care of their child.
After being read their rights, the mother no longer wanted to speak due to not understanding them.
The father said the boy didn’t want to go to the store with them. The child grabbed his food and said he was going to eat at the neighbor’s house.
The parents did not confirm if the child made it to the neighbor’s house and had no idea where he was for over an hour.
The parents face charges of neglecting a child without great bodily harm. They were taken separately down to the Immokalee Jail Center.