A Warren couple accused of leaving their toddler son at a Caesarland restaurant after his birthday party insisted today the ordeal has been a misunderstanding and they'll do whatever it takes to get the boy back.
They both broke down in tears this afternoon after being released on a $15,000 personal recognizance bond. They are scheduled to return to court for a preliminary hearing April 1.
"I want to clear my name, and I want my son back," Dion Johnson said as he exited Warren police headquarters. "We miss him a great deal."
Relatives claimed today that they did not discover the boy was missing until Monday. That's when they say the boy's mother called Caesarland and the father went up to the restaurant.
Police said the parents, who live in separate apartments in the same complex, were also brought in for questioning Monday.
Authorities say they both claimed the child's great-grandmother took him to the party, and they "assumed she was taking him home."
The parents told police that up until the day after the party
, each thought the other had the child or that he could be with the great-grandmother who resides in Detroit.
But police today said they now believe the family knew as early as Saturday night that the child wasn't accounted for.
"It did come up Saturday night," Warren Police Detective John Pierce said. "All indications are the people responsible for the child dropped the ball."
The boy is currently in foster care. A hearing is expected to decide if the boy is a ward of the court or is to be returned to his parents.