The 1-year-old child alleged to have been left alone in the woods by his drug-impaired father last week had been stolen from his legal guardian in West Virginia, according to new information by the Deschutes County district attorney.
Brandon Michael Blouin, 26, was charged Monday in Deschutes County Circuit Court with the felonies of first-degree custodial interference and first-degree criminal mistreatment, and the misdemeanors of second-degree child neglect and endangering the welfare of a minor.
The child’s legal guardian is his maternal grandmother, who lives in West Virginia, according to District Attorney John Hummel.
“The state alleges the defendant took the child without the legal authority and brought him to Bend,” Hummel said Tuesday.
Blouin is the biological father of the child, identified by police as Bradley Michael Thomas.
Bradley’s biological mother, Katelin Dawn Thomas, is not in custody and has not been charged with any criminal offenses. Hummel said the investigation is active and additional charges could come.
Police received a call from Blouin early Thursday to say he’d walked away from the vehicle he and Jordan were living in near China Hat Road, placed the child on the ground and was now unable to find him.
Blouin and Thomas were allegedly “under the influence of a controlled substance” the night in question, according to the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office.
Police weren’t sure exactly how long Bradley was left unattended, but it was at least the six hours between when Blouin made his call to police and 12:11 p.m., when sheriff’s detective Doug Jackson found Bradley “nude and laying in the dirt,” according to the sheriff’s office.
The search for Bradley scrambled authorities from around the area.
They included firefighters who were preparing to perform a prescribed burn near where Bradley was found.
Hummel said he did not know why the family was in Bend.
A request by Blouin for court-appointed counsel was approved this week by the court.
He is in custody in the Deschutes County jail. No bond amount has been set.
He’s scheduled to be arraigned in Circuit Court on Monday.
Blouin’s arrest report states he’s a resident of Belpre, Ohio.
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