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01-05-2006, 01:40 PM #1Professional Member
- Join Date
- Jul 2005
Vacationing Parents Get Sitter For Dogs, Leave Kids Alone
9-Year-Old Had To Care For 5-Year-Old With Autism
POSTED: 8:17 am EST January 5, 2006
MANTECA, Calif. -- A married couple who got a dog sitter for their puppies but left the man's young children home alone while they vacationed in Las Vegas were arrested Wednesday, police said.
Jacob Calero, 39, and Michelle De La Vega, 32, were taken into custody as they arrived home on a flight to Oakland. They had left town Friday to celebrate the new year, authorities said.
The couple apparently told 9-year-old Joshua to look after his 5-year-brother, Jason, who is autistic. The children spent one night alone before police found them.
The grandmother, Libbey Holden, said she called police because she had suspected the couple left the children at home in San Ramon, about 35 miles east of San Francisco.
"I had big concerns," Holden said. "These kids are helpless."
Joshua said his father and stepmother got each other puppies for Christmas, which they brought to De La Vega's mother to care for before leaving town.
"I thought they loved them more than us," Joshua told The Associated Press during an interview at his maternal grandmother's apartment. The children's mother died in 2003.
He added that he and his brother ate cereal for breakfast and cooked frozen dinners in the microwave.
"I didn't know who I could call in an emergency. Even if I called my father, he's far away, so there wouldn't be much he could do," Joshua said.
Calero and De La Vega each were being held on suspicion of two felony counts each of child endangerment. Bail was set at $200,000.
Police found the children asleep in their beds Saturday night. A gas fireplace was on, but they found nothing out of the ordinary.
"It appears that the food and the environment were set up for them to be alone," San Ramon Police Sgt. Brian Kalinowski said.
Officers began calling Calero's cell phone Saturday, but he didn't call back until Tuesday. "We get the sense that they felt no urgency for them to return home," Kalinowski said.
Calero and De La Vega have requested lawyers and have refused to talk to police, Kalinowski said. Felony child endangerment carries a maximum sentence of six years in prison.
Calero is a plumber and De La Vega works in a dental office, police said.
Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press.73% of Americans say that illegal immigration is a problem. The other 27% say, "No habla inglis!"
01-05-2006, 02:04 PM #2Originally posted by doglips
Calero is a plumber"If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a KA." - Albert Einstein
It's later than you think.
01-05-2006, 02:09 PM #3
What a ________________ !!!What will your legacy be ??
01-05-2006, 03:27 PM #4
What a buncha a--holes!
01-05-2006, 05:52 PM #5
At least they took the pooches somewhere to be looked after
01-05-2006, 06:13 PM #6Professional Member
- Join Date
- Dec 2004
- Sunny So Cal!
it was in San Ramon (outside of
packs of Raider fans would fear that area.
Proof that there aren't enough Indian Casinos in california-
"it is a public service we provide..."
01-05-2006, 10:56 PM #7Originally posted by doglips
Felony child endangerment carries a maximum sentence of six years in prison.
a max of 6 yrs
should be much longer
01-06-2006, 12:48 AM #8
They shouldbe sentinced to 5 yrs community service and forced to take parenting classes for three years
then each given a beating for being so stupid
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01-06-2006, 07:28 AM #9Regular Guest
- Join Date
- Feb 2002
i think they should have to babysit everyones kids in their city for the next five years while the parents go to vegas! that would be a hell theyd never forget!!
01-06-2006, 09:28 AM #10
This is one of those cases where the state needs to step in and take the children away from the children raising them.No excuse for that.If everything was always done "by the book"....the book would never change.
01-07-2006, 02:55 AM #11Regular Guest
- Join Date
- Sep 2004
But the dogs were new born puppies, they couldnt help themselves
and you can bet that wasnt the first time she left them like that