MANCHESTER, NH – A father is charged with child endangerment after he walked away from his two kids, ages 4 and 5, leaving them to fend for themselves on busy Chestnut Street, allegedly while he was under the influence of drugs.
Officers Kevin Shields and Ryan Boynton responded to Alley Cat Pizzeria at approximately 6:15 p.m. on June 17 for the report of two small children abandoned by an unknown man. The officers entered the restaurant and spoke with two witnesses who had taken the children inside the pizza place.
Jessica Gelinas and Anthony Rabbia of Manchester explained to police the situation as follows: A man not known to them was walking at a brisk pace on Chestnut Street, from the direction of Bridge Street, as two children attempted to “keep up” with him. Additional witnesses felt the man was intoxicated and most likely on drugs, based on the fact he seemed to have total disregard for the children’s safety by not paying attention to them as they walked on a busy street.
Several people who observed the man’s actions took the kids inside of the restaurant so they did not have to navigate the busy streets without proper supervision.
Officers Ben Foster and Ryan Olsen located Vito Paulino, 40, of Manchester, who fit the description of the man who had been seen with the children. He was found “staggering” down Union and Hanover streets. Officer Foster noted the man appeared to be under the influence of drugs based on his observations.
The man originally provided a false name, but later identified himself as Vito Paulino, who police learned had an outstanding warrant out of Hillsborough County. He was taken into custody without incident and charged with two counts of endangering the welfare of a child.
The investigation revealed Paulino was the father of the two children. The boy, 4, and girl, 5, were placed in the care of a family member. Paulino is scheduled to appear in the 9th Circuit Court-Manchester on June 19, 2017.