Police say man passed out drunk, left son for hours in SUV outside adult movie store

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Published 5:03 pm, Tuesday, March 28, 2017

A Houston man whose 6-year-old son was found wandering outside an adult movie store is being sought by police on a charge of endangering a child.

Darnell Washington, 38, is accused of leaving his son alone for hours March 1 in a white sport utility vehicle parked in a retail center in the 600 block of South Texas 6, according to court records.

About 7 p.m. that Wednesday, the owner of an adult film business said he found the boy wandering in his parking lot and went to a nearby tattoo shop to see if the boy’s parents were in there. A man in the tattoo shop, who said he had noticed a parked SUV with a child inside it, decided to call the police. 

The boy told officers his father had left him in the car alone for six hours without food or water, according to court documents. Since no adult came for the boy while police were at the tattoo shop, the officer turned him over to Texas Child Protective Services. An agency representative said Tuesday by email that the boy was not in temporary CPS custody and had been staying with friends. 

In a voluntary interview March 9, Washington told police that on the day of the incident he had been drinking but was “not woozy” when he picked up his son from school. At that point, he went to a friend’s house, where he had another four to five tequila shots while the boy waited in the car.

“The defendant stated his friend eventually told him to go home as he was starting to look bad,” records state.

On the way home, Washington said he stopped at the strip center on Texas 6 to use the restroom but was so “messed up” that he was turned away. To relieve himself, Washington said he went into an alley, where he also threw up and then passed out, records state.

When he regained consciousness, he discovered his child and car were gone. Police spoke with the defendant again on March 23. According to court records, Washington has not seen his son since March 1.

Washington is scheduled to appear April 11 in the 351st State District Court.

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