On Monday, July 14, at 9:28 am, the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office responded to the Mayfair Subdivision off SR 247, where a concerned citizen found two toddlers wandering unsupervised.
Deputies learned that Tony Petty had found the toddlers near the intersection of Pilots Way and Mayfair Lane at about 8:30 am. Mr. Petty took them to his nearby home and talked with neighbors to attempt to locate the parents. After failing to locate their home, he called CCSO.
DCF was notified as deputies and personnel for the Sheriff’s Office Citizen Service Unit began a door to door neighborhood canvass to locate the home where the toddlers came from. At 10:34 am, a CSU volunteer found the home on Pilots Way about 300 yards from where the children were found. The address where the children belonged was 228 SW Pilots Way.
Two DCF Child Protection Investigators arrived and began a joint investigation with the deputies. The investigation revealed the toddlers ages 2 and 1, had left the home while the 4 adults inside were asleep.
As a result of the investigation, the mother, Rikki Allagood, 21 and the father, John Newhart, 19, and the grandmother Victoria Swezey, 38 were arrested for child neglect. Allagood and Swezey face additional charges of obstruction for false statements given during their interviews.
Allagood, Newhart, and Swezey were booked into the Columbia County Detention Facility with no bond.