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Police: Toddler found in dog cage, father arrested

NEED TO KNOW
  • Police say neighbors found naked boy locked outside house in near-freezing temperatures
  • Responding officers found toddler in cage inside house
  • Father was allegedly passed out in bed when police arrived
Police: Toddler found in dog cage, father arrested

At first, neighbors heard the naked boy crying outside the house, according to police. It was only later, after officers forced their way into the home, that police say they discovered the girl in the dog cage.

Temperatures were near freezing on Sunday when residents of a Tulsa, Oklahoma neighborhood found a 3-year-old boy alone, naked and shivering. They went to the boy's home looking for his family, but there was no answer when they knocked, so they called police, according to Tulsa Police Department Officer Leland Ashley.

Ashley said responding officers looked through a window of the house and saw what appeared to be a child in a cage. After kicking down the back door, they found a 16-month-old girl in a dog cage wearing nothing but a diaper filled with feces.

In one of the bedrooms, they discovered another naked toddler and the children's father, 47-year-old William Lewallen, who was passed out on the bed, according to the arrest report.

"It took them a little bit to get him aroused," Ashley said.

According to the arrest report, once officers woke Lewallen, he allegedly told them that he had taken OxyContin and other medication and drunk a beer before he “laid down to take a rest.” 

Authorities believe the naked 3-year-old was alone outside for at least 20 minutes. The arrest report stated that police believe Lewallen was unaware the child was locked out of the house.

“It was 40 degrees at the time…He could have developed a medical condition or even death,” Corporal Greg Smith told KOTV.

Lewallen was arrested for child neglect and remains in Tulsa County Jail on $50,000 bond. Ashley said Wednesday that the investigation is still ongoing and additional charges are possible.

The children's mother was at work at the time of the incident and is not facing any charges, Ashley said.

Police and court officials did not know whether Lewallen had obtained an attorney. He is scheduled to appear in court for arraignment on November 19th.

 

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