The parents of a 3-year-old Huntington Station boy — who had been reported missing after his mother failed to appear in court to surrender him to Child Protective Services — were arrested and charged with endangering the welfare of a child and custodial interference, Suffolk police said.
The boy, Damian Sollas, was found unharmed in Huntington Station after a police officer spotted his mother, police said.
Selina Elswick, 32, and Thomas Sollas, 43, both of Huntington Station, were arraigned on the misdemeanor charges Wednesday afternoon before District Court Judge Stephen L. Ukeiley.
The judge issued stay-away orders barring the defendants from contact with the child, who police said is being cared for by CPS.
Elswick was ordered held on a warrant from Suffolk County Family Court. Thomas Sollas was released without bail. He declined to comment when leaving court, but his attorney Danielle Coysh of Central Islip said her client was unaware that the child had not been brought to the court-ordered appearance last week.
"My client did nothing unlawful here," Coysh said in an interview after the arraignment.
After Elswick failed to bring Damian to Family Court in Central Islip on Jan. 22, Child Protective Services reported Damian missing. It was not clear why CPS was seeking custody of the child.
On Tuesday afternoon, an officer saw a woman walking on New York Avenue who fit Elswick's description; she was later identified as his mother, officials said. An investigation then led officers to a nearby home where Damian was found. An adult — identified by Coysh as Thomas Sollas — was there as well.
"I'm looking forward to the DA's office investigating, hopefully getting to the bottom of this," Coysh said. "The information that I have literally shows that my client is innocent, not working with mom, that he wasn't even aware what was happening. And in fact, when the officers arrived, it was alleged that they knocked at the door, he opened it, and identified both himself and his son."
With Nicole Fuller