Dad arrested after children found wandering
Posted April 12, 2013
Roanoke Rapids, N.C. — A Roanoke Rapids man was charged after his two young children were found wandering in different parking lots near Interstate 95 on Monday.
The children, a 1-year-old girl and 2-year-old boy, were rescued by passers-by and were unharmed, police said.
Their father, Sean Cagel, 25, was charged with two counts of misdemeanor child abuse. He told investigators that children slipped out the back door of his apartment on Chockoyotte Street while he was cleaning and their mother was at work.
“Something really drastic could have happened,” Roanoke Rapids police Capt. Andy Jackson said. “With this area these two restaurants are located in, it’s a high volume of traffic.”
Virginia resident Erika Manes said she was in the parking lot of a McDonald’s near Cagel’s apartment when she saw a boy start to head out into the street.
“An SUV came flying through the McDonald’s parking lot and almost ran him over. I grabbed him up, and I just called 911,” she said. “I was pretty scared. I was shaking, and I kind of went into panic mode.”
Manes stayed and held the boy until officers arrived. At that point, two men approached and said they saw another child in a different parking lot.
Police said the girl, dressed only in a diaper, was wandering the parking lot of Ichiban Japanese restaurant.
The children were turned over to the custody of their grandmother. Cagel was released on a $5,000 bond.