Police say Lorenzo McCullough, 25, locked two children in a waste bin for hours. They were discovered covered in ants, but OK. (Dothan Police Department)
A Dothan man locked two young children in a brick waste container for hours over the weekend, and now is charged with child torture.
About 11 p.m. Friday, Dothan police officers were sent to the 700 block of Alabama Avenue to do a welfare check on a man and his two children at that address. The City of Dothan/Houston County Emergency Operations Center was told that Lorenzo McCullough was suicidal and was threatening harm two children, ages 2 and 4. Neither McCullough nor the children were at the apartment, police said in a Monday press release.
At about 12:15 a.m. Saturday, officers found McCullough walking in Johnson Homes alone. He took off when officers tried to talk to him, and ran into the back door of another apartment. McCullough was found hiding in a closet, but the children were nowhere to be found.
A massive search was launched, which included multiple investigators, patrol officers, a Dothan Fire Department Engine Company and Houston County sheriff's deputies. Tracking dogs were also brought in to help in the search.
At 2 a.m., the children were located alive inside a locked brick waste container area at Johnson Homes. Both children were covered in ants, and taken to the hospital for treatment. Lt. Will Glover said the children - a 2-year-boy and 4-year-old girl- were asleep when police found them.
They were checked out at the hospital and then released to their mother. DHR developed a safety plan for them.
McCullough, 25, is charged with two counts of torture or willful abuse of a child under the age of 19, attempting to elude law enforcement officers and unlawful breaking and entering of a vehicle.He is being held without bond.
"It was certainly the outcome were we're hoping for," Glover said.