Local News

Father charged with neglect after toddler drowns

Posted June 11, 2008

— The father of a toddler who drowned in a pool at their Siler City home was charged with misdemeanor child neglect Wednesday.

A neighbor found Timothy Austin Parnell, 2, in an above-ground pool in the backyard of his 100 Piney Bluff Road home on the morning of May 31. Attempts to revive Timothy were unsuccessful, and officials ruled that he drowned.

Authorities said the boy's father, Timothy Jason Parnell, 28, was inside the house when the neighbor found his son.

The Chatham County Sheriff's Office conducted a joint investigation with Child Protective Services and charged Parnell with one count of misdemeanor child neglect after consulting the district attorney's office.

Investigators said they found that Parnell provided inadequate supervision of the children and the swimming pool did not have a fence and lockable gate, violating county ordinances.

Other children who lived in the home have been placed with relatives, officials said.

Parnell was released from the Chatham County Jail under a $2,000 unsecured bond. His first court appearance was set for June 17.


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  • nrsnan Jun 13, 2008

    luvmy2boys, you took the words right out of my mouth...dataclerk, it must be so wonderful to be so perfect. I wonder if she walks on water too?

    In all my years, I have discovered the ones that make claims like dataclerk are usually the ones that are kidding theirselves or have something to hide. the ole` "thou protest too much" syndrome comes to mind!

  • luvmy2boys Jun 12, 2008

    Dataclerk, you certainly are full of yourself. Glad you think your parenting skills are so perfect. I'm raising two boys with severe disabilities. How dare you say people like me are good for making excuses. You don't know me from Adam. I'm a wonderful mother who breaks her back on a daily basis to raise my children. See, there again you are quick to judge. And in what part of my statement did I say that he should not be punished or that what he did was right. Maybe you should go back and read it again. It's people like you who make this world such a angry place.

  • Dr. Dataclerk Jun 12, 2008

    "...like all of you have supervised your children 100% of the time."

    I did indeed. Did not have a moment that I regretted. I a responsible parent. Can you say the same?

  • Dr. Dataclerk Jun 12, 2008

    I tend to get annoyed by the watch them 100% of the time mentality I perceive on here.

    While you are getting annoyed, continue to watch out for young children. CHILDREN, UNLIKE YOU DO NOT KNOW DANGER.

  • tarheelalum Jun 12, 2008

    I agree 100% with the charge...not excuse whatsoever for a 2yr old to make it in a pool and drown before the father notices. I honestly think the punishment should have been a bit harsher....possibly a felony.

  • Dr. Dataclerk Jun 12, 2008

    More than likely it will come back to bite you in the rear one day.

    I doubt that. I always watched my children. Keep making excuses, people like you are good for that. The father should have been keep an eye on these young children. No I do not feel sorry for him or any parent that is not responsbile.

  • luvmy2boys Jun 12, 2008

    Because of the time of death, my guess is that the child went outside on his own. I completely agree that a 2 year old child should be watched closely. This is a terrible thing that has happened to this family and it is possible that it could have been avoided. However, for those of us that have children, be very careful how you judge another person's parenting skills. More than likely it will come back to bite you in the rear one day. I know this from experience.

  • nrsnan Jun 12, 2008

    When we purchased an above ground pool, our children were old enough and big enough to stand up on their own and swim in it safely, however, a pool is what they call an " attractive nussance" (sp?) and children from neighboring houses could have wandered into our yard uninvited and therefore an accident could occur. To be diligent and hopefully safe so that things like this did not occur, we installed locks on our gates but also placed a splash sensor in our pool. That way, if any child entered the pool without our knowledge, a VERY loud alarm would go off and we would be alerted, much the same as a smoke detector. Since we had small dogs at the time, it also would alert us if one of the dogs fell into the pool. This tragedy could have been prevented had this family had an inexpensive pool alarm available at any pool store. My prayers for this family, I dearly hope that some other family is saved their own tragedy by reading and learning from this fatal mistake,

  • ezLikeSundayMorning Jun 12, 2008

    There is nothing in the story about the child being at the pool and the dad going inside.

    My assumption was that the child went outside on his own and the dad didn't know. Without more detail we just don't know. I have to believe if CPS investigated that they would make a good decision.

    I tend to get annoyed by the watch them 100% of the time mentality I perceive on here.

    BTW, I either had a post rejected or didn't submit it. Do we get a message if it's rejected?

  • Adelinthe Jun 12, 2008

    "...children can get away from you quickly..."

    AMEN, TO THAT...even when you're right there watching them. And if you aren't and they have a good head of steam ahead of you, they're in the road or pool before you can even get to them.

    I once had a 2-year old climbing monkey bars. I didn't want to tell him he couldn't because I thought he might interpret as being disable to do so in some way. So I stood right next to that child while he climbed, and as one would expect, his hand slipped and he fell. I was right there and still couldn't catch him in time. Thank God he didn't get hurt.

    So just about the time you think you have your kids alllll figured out, think again - cause they're smart and fast and cagey. ;o) Bless their hearts.

    God bless.

    Rev. RB