6-year-old walks out of school, parents shocked

March 28, 2012 8:09:14 PM PDT
There were scary moments for a mother in the Bronx when her 6-year-old child went missing from school.

No one had any idea where he was.

So how did the boy leave campus and no one knew?

His mother was hysterical outside the school and his father sprinted over when he heard their son was missing.

In a moment like that they say it is impossible for any parent to not think the worst.

As E.J. Rodriguez and his classmates waited for their parents to pick them up from P.S. 96 Wednesday afternoon, the kindergartener decided he just couldn't wait any more.

So, he snuck out and ran home.

"My son could have been hit by a car. He's six years old, he doesn't know how to cross the street. My son could have been kidnapped, raped, murdered. We see that every day on TV," said Aisha Menendez, E.J.'s mother.

"She thought I would die and be in the ground or that a car would hit me or a stranger would take me and hurt me," E.J. Rodriguez said.

The 6-year-old walked three long blocks and crossed two busy intersections.

"I crossed right here," E.J. Rodriguez described.

When he couldn't get into his building, he went to his babysitter's home next door.

"I say, 'Where's your mom? Where's your brother?'" the babysitter said.

"I was in tears. The lady that brought him to me was in tears. Everyone was in tears. It's scary. Very, very scary," Menendez said.

The principal says teachers reacted within seconds and reported him missing, but E.J.'s parents don't believe it and are demanding answers.

"I expect for him to safe, to be looked after. How is it that a six year old walks out and nobody sees him? If something happened to him sorry wouldn't be enough. I just want answers. Obviously the system failed. Today was my son, tomorrow could be somebody else's kid," said Efrain Rodriguez, E.J.'s father.

"I'm not going to do it again. (Because your mom was worried?) I was worried too," E.J. Rodriguez said.

The principal is meeting with staff Thursday to ensure this doesn't happen again.

E.J.'s mom says police told her no criminal acts were made and suggested she file a report with the Board of Education.

She says that's exactly what she did.

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