An intense search for a missing toddler has resulted in a positive outcome, Orangeburg County Sheriff Leroy Ravenell announced Thursday.
“We’re just thankful this didn’t turn into a nightmare for this child, his parents and the community,” Ravenell said. “We had deputies on scene with minutes of the call searching for this child.
“We’re just so thankful we were able to attain the outcome we wanted.”
A Haddock Road woman called 911 just before 4 p.m. Wednesday saying her husband called to let her know he couldn’t find their 2-year-old child.
More than a dozen Orangeburg County Sheriff’s Office deputies along with officers from the Department of Natural Resources and the ATF converged on the residential area where the child was reported missing.
“Our biggest concern is that the location where the child was last known to be is about 200 feet from Edisto Drive,” Ravenell said. “Toward the end of the working day, this four-lane highway can get even more busy than it is during the day.”
The child’s father told investigators he was taking a nap. When he woke up, the child was gone.
Searchers were given a description of the child's clothing that included a Thomas the Tank Engine T-shirt.
As deputies fanned out, Deputy Jasmine Snell looked inside a vehicle at the residence where she noticed several child restraint seats. A further search revealed a child’s shoe.
And then Thomas the Tank Engine.
The child was found on the floorboard, partially under a seat. However, the relief was short-lived as the child was unresponsive when he was removed from the vehicle.
Snell, Deputy Wayne Kirby and Inv. Allen Culpepper began rubbing water on the child’s body to cool him down before he could be transported to a hospital.
“The child is said to be in good condition as of this morning, but this action by these quick-thinking deputies quite possibly saved his life,” Ravenell said.
An ongoing investigation is being conducted by the sheriff’s office and the S.C. Department of Social Services.