1 Fort Lauderdale
News & Reviews
A Key West woman was jailed Sunday after police said she drunkenly neglected her 8-year-old son, who officers found locked in a bathroom hiding from her.
The mother’s blood-alcohol level was 0.30, police said. The legal limit for being drunk is 0.08.
Debra Lee Dowd-Alush, 36, was arrested on a felony charge of child neglect.
On Sunday afternoon, she was screaming at her son to light her cigarette and get her more beer, according to the police report. He burned his thumb while trying to light the cigarette, police said, and when he didn’t give her any more alcohol, she screamed even louder at him.
The boy locked himself in the bathroom, fearing for his safety, and called his father, who called 911.
Police arrived at about 4:45 p.m. Sunday to the home at the Navy’s residential base, Sigsbee. Officers asked the boy if he had eaten anything since breakfast.
“Why would I go downstairs and ask my drunk mother to feed me?” the boy answered.
Meanwhile, officers tried to speak with the mother, who was slumped on the couch and “was too intoxicated to spell out her name,” Officer Antonio Ane wrote. “Dowd-Alush was unable to form a coherent sentence when asked what was going on today.”
The boy’s father, who does not have full custody of the boy, told police the state Department of Children and Families is investigating Dowd-Alush’s behavior.