It was around 6:30 a.m. a worker at Precision Driveshaft Service at the corner of Genesee St. and N. Rosemary St. in Lansing Township had just gone to the bathroom. When he returned, he found a 6 year old boy, wearing nothing more than a pull-up diaper, standing barefoot in his workshop.
The worker, who would only give his name as Bob, tried to talk to the child, but the boy wouldn't talk back. Instead, he wandered around the workshop before wandering out into the street. That's when Bob called police.
"When our officers responded, they found him on N. Rosemary just north of W. Michigan Avenue," said Kay Hoffman, chief of police in Lansing Township. "At that time they were able to make contact with that child."
But contact was difficult. The boy has autism, according to his foster parent, and that made it challenging to get him into an ambulance, Hoffman said. She called him "frightened" and "combative."
"This was a little unique situation because this child was six years old. In normal circumstances a child would have been able to communicate to the officers or to the neighbor that they needed some help or were hungry or whatever the case may be," Hoffman said.
Hoffman said the child had walked out the front door of his foster home on the 400 block of N. Catherine St. before his family woke up. The child's foster mother didn't call police until 9:45 a.m., Hoffman said.
The boy was taken to the St. Lawrence campus at Sparrow Hospital, where police say he is unharmed.
The police have turned over the investigation to Child Protective Services. Hoffman says at this point it doesn't appear charges will be brought, but that could change pending the CPS investigation.