Portage dad arrested after son, 2, found wandering street

2014-05-13T12:12:00Z 2014-05-14T12:26:08Z Portage dad arrested after son, 2, found wandering streetJoyce Russell joyce.russell@nwi.com, (219) 762-1397, ext. 2222 nwitimes.com

PORTAGE | A Portage man was arrested after his 2-year-old son was discovered wandering a street. His father was allegedly found passed out inside his home.

Terry J. Driver, 24, of 3316 Brown St., was charged with three felony counts of child neglect, criminal mischief and disorderly conduct.

Police were called to the 5300 block of Rose Avenue about noon on Saturday when a man reported seeing a small boy, wearing only a diaper and T-shirt, initially sitting near the intersection of Rose and Brown and then climb inside an SUV.

When police arrived, they found the boy dirty and sweating inside the vehicle, which had its windows rolled up.

Police found where they believed the child lived and began knocking on the door. Despite the knocking noise and dogs barking, no adult appeared. Police then heard an infant crying and entered the home. They found a 4-month-old baby in a cradle with its entire body and face covered by blankets and a 1-year-old child behind a gate at the far end of the duplex.

Police found Driver in a bed. Driver remained unresponsive until police began to shake him. According to the report, he was agitated when he was awakened and began a string of profanities directed at police and at his children.

Police said he was immediately handcuffed.

He continued to be uncooperative during the incident, even damaging a police car by kicking over a drink in a console, spilling the liquid on the electronics. At one point, according to the report, while he was inside the squad car, he rolled down the window with his mouth to shout additional profanities at police.

Driver allegedly told police he had taken the children's mother to work and when he returned, an unnamed adult was at the home, so he went to sleep. He said his mother actually had custody of the children.

The police report states officers also found marijuana and drug paraphernalia in the home's kitchen. The report described the home as "cluttered and messy and there was an odor of feces/urine in the residence."

The children and Driver were taken to Portage Hospital for medical clearance. The Department of Child Services was contacted.

Driver was taken to the Porter County Jail after he was medically cleared.

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