Drunk Bradenton Man Locked Toddler in Car

BRADENTON, Fla. – A Bradenton man is being accused of leaving his 18-month old toddler alone in a locked car while he went drinking at Linksters Tap Room on Christmas Eve, WFLA reported.

Deputies from Manatee County Sheriff’s Office said that J. Miante, 30, was at The Mall at University Town Center with his girlfriend, D. Judd, their 18-month old child, and his mother. According to investigators, he was heavily intoxicated when he got into an argument with Judd.

Miante took off with his young child, while leaving his mother and girlfriend behind at the mall.

After driving Miante’s mother home, Judd waited for Miante to arrive home, but he never showed up. Then, Judd received a call from someone who informed her that Miante was heavily intoxicated and trying to leave the tap room with their toddler in the car.

The investigators said that Judd drove to Linksters Tap Room at 8201 Cooper Creek Blvd, located near The Mall at University Town Center. The couple began arguing and by the time deputies arrived around 8 p.m., the arguing couple had been physically separated.

The investigation revealed that the couple’s 18-month-old toddler was missing. According to Miante’s arrest affidavit, he claimed that his girlfriend had their child, and she claimed that he left Sarasota with the toddler.

In the arrest affidavit, the deputies wrote that due to Miante’s intoxication level, he couldn’t remember where his child was, or where he had parked his vehicle.

After deputies interviewed several witnesses they found the child, who was left unattended in a non-running, locked vehicle for 20 or 30 minutes while Miante was drinking in the bar.

Miante was arrested on charges of domestic battery and child neglect, WFLA reported. He was later released from Manatee County Jail after posting $4,000 bond.

Penalties for Child Neglect in Florida

If Miante is found guilty of child neglect, what types of penalties does this young father face? Under Section 827.03 of the Florida Statutes, anyone who willfully or by culpable negligence neglects a child without causing permanent disability, permanent disfigurement, or great bodily harm, commits a felony of the third degree, punishable by:

  • Up to 5 years in prison
  • Up to a $5,000 fine

If you are being accused of child neglect, your future and your family are at risk. Just think, what would happen to your family if you went to prison for several years? To protect your rights and your family’s future, contact a Tampa criminal defense attorney from Thomas & Paulk, P.A. without delay!