CHANDLER, Ariz. -- A Chandler couple are facing child abuse charges after reportedly leaving their 8-year-old son home alone locked in a bathroom on numerous occasions.
Chandler police said a maintenance worker checking on leaking water Tuesday evening discovered the severely disabled boy locked in the bathroom of an apartment near Alma School and Warner roads. No one else was home and he called police.
After removing the doorknob, the child was found was naked and standing in about 2 inches of water. He had stuffed his clothes into the toilet, causing a flood inside the apartment.
According to the police report, the boy has the mental capacity of an 18-month-old and was unable to communicate with the officers. He was transported to a nearby hospital for evaluation.
Police were unable to locate the child's parents.
Later in the evening, Vu Quang Tran, 35, and Siobhan Grogan, 34, arrived at the Chandler Police Department asking where their son was.
They were placed under arrest.
Investigators learned the couple have left their son alone on several occasions.
According to Chandler police spokesman Detective Seth Tyler, after "testing" the child to see if he would harm himself while locked in the bathroom, Tran and Grogan eventually started the practice of locking their son in the bathroom so they could "lead a normal life" with their 5-year-old daughter.
Grogan told police that they "like to feel like a normal family once in a while." They said they felt it was safe to leave him locked in the bathroom.
Tyler said the parents prefer this remedy over public or private assistance, which they have not utilized for his care.
The boy was left in the custody of the hospital until other arrangements could be made. His sister is in the care of Child Protective Services.
Each parent was charged with one count of child abuse with intent, a class 2 felony. They are both due at court hearings on Oct. 17.
Detectives from the Family Crimes Unit are seeking the public's assistance with the investigation. If you recognize or are acquainted with Tran or Grogan, contact the Chandler Police Department at 480-782-4130.