Home alone: Couple accused of leaving 2-year-old in South Carolina apartment for NY trip

CHARLESTON, S.C. — A South Carolina couple has a lot of explaining to do after their apartment manager found their 2-year-old son alone in their Charleston residence.

According to the Charleston Police Department, an incident report indicated that officers responded at around 2 p.m. Thursday to the Folly Road complex for reports of an abandoned child, WCIV reported.

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The apartment manager confirmed to police that 24-year-old Donald Gekonge lived in the unit where the young child was found sleeping on a bed in the living room, the incident report stated.

Attempts to reach Gekonge had been unsuccessful, so managers conducted an emergency walkthrough of the apartment and found the child, WCIV reported.

According to WCBD-TV, a witness told officers that Gekonge, the child’s father, sent a text saying he was in New York for business.

As per the TV station: “When police entered, the child woke up and ‘immediately reached for his empty water bottle.’ With the exception of a dirty diaper, police said the child seemed to be in good health.”

Gekonge initially told authorities that he was not sure who was looking after his son, then said it may be the boy’s mother, 24-year-old Darlene Aldrich, WCIV reported.

Gekonge then changed his story and admitted that Aldrich was also in New York but claimed that her visit was because of an “emergency,” the incident report stated.

Gekonge and Aldrich were both arrested Monday afternoon on one count each of unlawful conduct toward a child, WCIV reported.

Gekonge is being held on a $50,000 bond, while Aldrich is being held on a $75,000 bond, WCBD reported.