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Child Neglect - Arrest

Post Date:06/30/2017 10:39 AM
RELEASED BY: SGT BRIAN HART

CASE # MP170042045

EVENT: Child Neglect - Arrest

DATE/TIME of EVENT: June 29, 2017 at 1:09 PM

LOCATION of EVENT: 420 S. Harbor City Bl – River Palm Motel

Officers from the Melbourne Police Department responded to the River Palm Motel in reference to a report of a 6 year old juvenile wandering around the motel without adult supervision. Officers arrived at the location and made contact with motel staff and the child. The child took officers to her hotel room where three other juveniles, ages 7, 3, and 1 were found. The motel room the children were located in was in a less than sanitary and safe condition. Officers discovered no food or drinks for the children, only rotting food, bed sheets soiled with human waste, dirty diapers left exposed, and numerous cigarette butts on the floor within immediate reach of all the children. It was apparent the children had no means to contact the parents in case of an emergency. The room was located on the second floor of the motel and accessed by a concrete stairwell. On the motel’s property is a swimming pool and the motel is situated right on US1, a major roadway with a significant amount of high speed traffic.

Officers began searching for the parents using the phone numbers listed at check in and other law enforcement databases. Officers also began checking with local hospitals and other facilities in attempts to locate the children’s parents. After over an hour and a half of investigation, the parents, Shandra Gatlin and Samuel Rodney, returned to the motel. The parents provided a story of their whereabouts, however, the information provided could not be corroborated nor was any valid reason for leaving the children unattended for a minimum of an hour and half provided. Both parents failed to properly supervise and maintain a safe and healthy environment for their children. As a result both parents were arrested and charged with child neglect. The Florida Department of Children and Families responded and took custody of the children. Both parents were booked at the Melbourne Police Department and turned over to the care and custody of the Brevard County Jail.

Shandra Gatlin B/F
DOB 04/28/1984
LKA: 420 S. Harbor City Blvd., Melbourne, Florida 32901
Charges: Child Neglect

Samuel Rodney B/M
DOB 03/10/1983
LKA: 420 S. Harbor City Blvd., Melbourne, Florida 32901
Charges: Child Neglect

The Melbourne Police Department is currently investigating this incident, and more information may be available at a later time.

If you have any information please call Crimeline:
1-800-423-TIPS (8477)

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