Archive for Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Johnson County deputies win award for rescuing 6-year-old De Soto boy confined in attic

December 22, 2010


Johnson County Sheriff Frank Denning awarded four sheriff’s deputies the Life Saving Award for their efforts to rescue the 6-year-old De Soto boy confined to his attic in August.

Sergeants Brent Moore and Mark Rokusek and Deputies Evan Comerio and John Klingele rescued the son of Rachel Perez from her attic on Aug. 17, where he had been confined for an unknown length of time.

According to the incident report, upon initial inquiry, Perez told the deputies her son was not in the home. After Perez was taken into custody for a traffic warrant, the deputies returned to the home at the request of a family member to search for the boy. The deputies reported noticing a smell coming from the outside of the home, the others boosted Klingele through a window into the attic, where the boy was found.

Recipients of the Life Saving Award are anonymously nominated to the department’s recognition committee, which then selects recipients based on how they were able to “distinguish themselves as worthy of formal recognition,” according to Master Deputy Tom Erickson.

Rokusek has been with the department for 22 years, Moore for 13, Klingele for eight and Comerio for seven.


Neomarxist123 7 years, 5 months ago

Ended that poor child's nightmare. Good work Deputies.

Kelly Johnson 7 years, 5 months ago

So, let me get this straight...they went to the home to check on the child's welfare, couldn't find the child, arrested the mother for other violations, left without thoroughly checking the residence for the child, only went back after family members begged them to check again, THEN found the child, and now get an award for their outstanding rescue?

How in the world did this go on so long in the first place? It's horrifying.

Joe Hyde 7 years, 5 months ago

It went on so long in the first place, PopcoRN, because with most people -- whether they be family members or police officers -- it is human nature to deny the possibility that a mother would deliberately confine her own son in an attic and leave him there to die.

To overcome doubts that such gruesome abuse is happening requires a leap of imagination that few people are willing to take, much less act on. Those officers totally deserve this award, and it's too bad awards can't be given also to the family members who reported their suspicions. But that's cool; when those folks get old and die they'll be taking the express train to Heaven for saving that kid's life.

farva 7 years, 5 months ago

PopcoRN, if a police officer searched like that through every house whenever a criminal said "NO", whether truthful or not, there would be all types of complaints and issues. It doesn't even sound like the deputies knew the child was in danger when they went there, and whenever they arrest someone with children, they just have to make sure the kids are taken care of somehow. The family members, knowing more, probably directed them back and should also be honored.

I really hope you are not an RN.

Kelly Johnson 7 years, 5 months ago

Farva, why would you say you hope I'm not an RN? One would think you'd prefer a nurse who pays attention to detail and looks beyond the surface. I am an RN, and I take care of people with substance abuse and psychiatric issues, and I have worked inside a jail alongside law enforcement officers as well as a variety of other settings. I am good at what I do and part of the reason for that is because I don't always take things at face value.

In previous articles, it states that the police went to this residence to do a welfare check on the 6 yr old. The mother told them the boy wasn't there, and they took her in on other charges and went on their way, only coming back after a family member asked them to return. I don't know what standard procedure is when checking a child's welfare, but if someone is concerned enough to call in requesting it, a red flag should go up. I would think the police officers would have to be more thorough in verifying the wellbeing of the child.

Riverat, I guess it's my experience with criminals and drug addicts that has jaded me and made me forget that I used to be more naive and trusting and some people are still like that.

The end result was that the child was saved and for that I am grateful. It makes my heart ache to think of how terribly he was neglected. Which is probably why it makes me feel frustrated that it took the police a 2nd visit to find him.

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