Couple arrested after boy with Down Syndrome found alone in neighborhood

By Gianna Caserta - Reporter , Erica Young - News Producer

DEER PARK - A Deer Park couple was arrested after allegedly leaving a young child with Down Syndrome unsupervised outside their home.

The little boy's parents are now sitting in the Harris County Jail, charged with endangering a child after they left him under the supervision of a 4-year-old.

On June 6, Sara Andrews was home with her family when a little boy with Down syndrome came wandering through her yard holding a puppy.

"He had this little puppy with him that has an address and a phone number, and I asked him, 'Is this your animal?' And he said, 'That is my puppy, that is my puppy,'" said Sara Andrews.

She called the number on the dog tag and told his parents she had found him.

"There was nobody looking for him," Andrews said.

Then she brought him back to his home, about four blocks away.

"The parents, you would have thought I brought them back trash, like this is your trash bag that you dumped down the street. They were both very hesitant, that is when I became concerned. Normal moms that lost their kid are crazy, 'Oh my god I lost my kid.' I couldn't imagine and she was very quiet," said Andrews.

She called police and reported what had happened. Officers arrived and questioned the parents.

"When they responded, they found the mother and the father also to be highly intoxicated," said Det. J. R. Hill with the Deer Park Police Department.

When asked for an explanation, officers say the parents told them he was being watched by their 4-year-old and 5-year-old boys. After an investigation, the boy's parents -- 25-year-old Brandon Copey and 25-year-old Jennifer Free -- were both arrested and charged with endangering a child.

"He could have gotten run over, he could have gotten picked up by someone with the wrong intentions, he is just lucky that he came upon this ladies driveway and she was a good person," said Hill.

CPS is investigating this case. The little boy and his siblings are now staying with a responsible family friend.

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