SARASOTA (FOX 13) - An alarming case of alleged child neglect landed a Sarasota couple in jail, after they were apparently so high, they passed out in their SUV with two babies in the backseat, deputies said Wednesday.
Deputies said William Ballard, 36, and Delaney Crissinger, 32, pulled into a Texaco gas station on Fruitville Road last Thursday moring; surveillance video shows it was still dark out at the time.
At about 8 a.m. customers noticed Ballard and Crissinger were passed out in the front seat with two babies, a 5-month-old and a 1-year-old, in the car. The witnesses also saw a lot of drugs in the vehicle and called 911.
"We don't really see what addiction is about until we see something like that and that what saddens me most about it." said Eric Roundtree, who works at a restaurant next door and was there that day. "You're an adult, you can do what you want to do but don't bring your kids involved. And those two little innocent kids didn't have nothing to do with this but now they're shaken up."
Roundtree said several customers boxed the vehicle in just in case the adults woke up and tried to drive away.
When Sarasota deputies arrived they found Ballard and Crissinger still asleep. A search of the vehicle turned up methamphetamine, heroin, Fentanyl, drug paraphernalia and a loaded syringe on the floor next to a container of baby formula.
"It's a sad situation all around. You've got people that are committing crimes and using drugs, doing those things, then you have them bringing their kids along with them creating other victims," said Lt. Joe Giasone. "Anyone that would leave that would leave kids in the back of the car when they have the amount of drugs that were in this car, it's sad for the kids."
The children were taken into state custody and are now in the care of other family members.