Police in Tulsa, say they have arrested a man after they found his 18-month-old daughter covered in feces and locked in a metal dog cage, his four-year-old daughter naked and crying outside on a cold day. A neighbor found the girl and called the police.
The Los Angeles Times reports the father of the child, Todd Lewallen, 47, was found in bed, drunk and high on Oxycontin, with the 18-month-old in a cage. He was arrested on a complaint of child neglect.
The neighbor who called the police heard the child crying in the backyard for about 20 minutes. No one answered the door when he went to the house at around 4 p.m. Sunday. AP reports that with temperatures in the low 40s, the neighbor took the child, wrapped her in a blanket and took her to his home.
AP reports police broke into Lewallen's house when they saw the child in the cage through the window.
Officer Leland Ashley said police found the man in bed “in an alcohol or narcotics-induced stupor,” wrapped up in blankets. They found a naked 3-year-old asleep in another room, AP reports.
Police say when officers interviewed Lewallen, he said "he had taken several OxyContin and a beer as well."
The Los Angeles Times reports the Oklahoma Department of Human Services took the children into protective custody, and the father was arrested on a child neglect complaint.
Officer Leland Ashley said, “A citizen was concerned, he heard a small child crying outside for about 20 minutes. He went outside to investigate and found the 4-year-old child. You have to give credit to that neighbor who acted and did not ignore the situation.”
AP reports Lewallen was being held in the Tulsa County jail on $50,000 bond.
The Los Angeles Times reports that Oklahoma court records show that a man by the same name and birth date pleaded no contest in August to possessing materials to make amphetamine. He received a probation with condition not to use alcohol or drugs.
Court records say Lewallen dropped out of school after junior high. He has five children and was living on disability. Police would not confirm that the Lewallen in the court records was the same as the man they had arrested, The Los Angeles Times reports.
But police said the children's mother came home from work while officers were at the house. But officers did not arrest the woman for child neglect since the father of the children was at home with them.