The man accused of leaving his 1-year-old son alone in the woods outside Bend told The Bulletin his case has been misconstrued by authorities and he will fight the charges in court.
Brandon Michael Blouin appeared briefly in Deschutes County Circuit Court on Friday to plead not guilty to six counts.
Outside the courthouse, Blouin said, “there’s a lot of information the people don’t know,” declining to elaborate on that information.
“I’m fighting this all the way through,” he said. “It was a serious situation that happened that night. It was really detrimental to my life, and it scared me real bad. I’m not trying to avoid anything, but I am planning to go all the way through on this.”
Blouin was arrested in May for what authorities described as a stunning tale of neglect.
According to authorities, Blouin and Katelin Dawn Thomas were living in a Jeep off China Hat Road with their son, Bradley Michael Thomas.
On the night of May 10, both parents were “under the influence” when Katelin Thomas left the vehicle, according to police.
Sometime in the night, Blouin woke up and took the baby to go look for her. At some point, he set the boy on the forest floor and walked off, according to police.
Blouin eventually walked to a house off Sholes Road and asked to call police, which set off a major manhunt to find Bradley. The search was aided by firefighters who were massing in the area to perform a controlled burn.
At 12:11 p.m., Bradley was located “nude and laying in the dirt” by a sheriff’s detective.
A week later, the Deschutes County District Attorney added charges of custodial interference and criminal mistreatment when it was learned Blouin had allegedly taken Bradley from his legal guardian, the child’s maternal grandmother, who lives in West Virginia.
Thomas has not been charged in the matter.
Blouin was granted conditional release from the Deschutes County jail in July. Following his release, he posted about the case on his Facebook page. “So glad I will have my chance to show the Nation the truth and put an end to the rumors the Sheriff’s office and the media have started. Justice will be served in the end and I’ll be proud to prove my side once trial starts.”
Blouin is listed in court documents as a resident of Belpre, Ohio.
According to a motion filed by his attorney, Karla Nash, Blouin sought to return to Ohio to live with his grandparents while his case is adjudicated because he is “without resources for local housing.”
Blouin’s six-day jury trial is scheduled for April.
— Reporter: 541-383-0325, firstname.lastname@example.org