Parents of boy who crashed car appear in court

By Nicole Bell - bio | email

Posted by Colby Rogers

The Northumberland parents who were arrested after their 6-year-old son drove their car into a utility pole appeared in court Friday. The pair is charged with child neglect.

David Dodson, 40 and Jacqulyn Waltman, 26, are each charged with one count of felony child neglect. The charges stem from an incident that happened Monday morning when their 6-year-old son took the family car and tried to drive himself to school .

The first-grader drove 10 miles, crossing a bridge and two busy intersections before slamming the car into a utility pole.

While the boy took his drive,  Waltman was at home sleeping. The boy's father was at work.

There is a court order mandating that the father not leave the boy alone with his mother because a similar incident has occurred before.

The boy's mother, walked into court wearing a prison uniform and shackles around her ankles. Dodson bonded out of jail earlier in the week and is not in police custody.

The two were each appointed an attorney and both appeared calm in court. The hearing lasted only a few minutes.

Dodson said little in court today and had no comment after the hearing. His attorney said that Dodson is thankful his son is safe and that he apologizes for those who were put in danger.

Waltman, the boy's mother, remains behind bars - in part because she's facing bad check charges in another jurisdiction. Both parents are scheduled to appear in court again on March 20.

The 6-year-old and his brother are now staying with foster parents.

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