DUQUESNE, Pa. - A mother and father are facing several charges after police said their child fell out of a window in Duquesne and was left outside for hours.
Lisa Campbell and Sonny Strong appeared in court Tuesday for a preliminary hearing.
Investigators said the couple’s toddler fell out of a second-story window and was left outside crying for hours. Police said the incident happened at a home on Orchard Court on July 31.
Strong and Campbell both face child endangerment charges.
The couple’s lawyer said the boy crawled out of a window without a screen that was parallel to the 2-year-old’s bed.
“The window was parallel to a bunk bed, so the child was not thrown out the window. The child crawled out the window and fell and was up and walking around at the time,” said the couple’s attorney Milton Raiford
A neighbor said she found the boy lying on the ground.
Brittny Smith said she heard the child crying around 6:30 a.m. and thought it was coming from inside. After hearing the cries for several hours, Smith said she walked outside to find the boy lying on the concrete, face down, wearing only a soiled diaper with flies swarming around him.
“I instantly started crying. I never thought I would have to see a child lying on the ground, face down. I just couldn’t believe the parents didn’t check on their child,” Smith said. “I did move his arms to see if anything was broken but nothing was broken. He wasn't even crying anymore it was like he wimpered because he was crying all night.”
“The goal in this, is that their [the couple’s] children are reunited with their parents and that the parents are going to parent according to good parenting principles and not by what they were exposed to as children,” said Raiford.
Police said the child suffered a fractured skull and had cuts on his head and shoulder.
According to the criminal complaint, when police arrived the father did not show any regard for his injured son.
“I was holding his child and he didn't even come down the steps to reach for his baby. Any normal parent would have run to get their baby off a stranger, but he just stood there,” Smith said.
Channel 11’s Jennifer Tomazic reported that the couple had a 5-month-old who died in their custody in 2007.
According to the medical examiner’s office, the child was found face down in the corner of a playpen.
Records indicate the child’s exact cause of death was asphyxiation due to wedging and the manner was accidental. The couple was not charged.
The couple's attorney said their seven children are all in the custody of Children Youth and Family Services.