ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – Police say a 7-year-old may be in danger after his dad took him out of the hospital with medical equipment still running through the boy’s arm.
Surveillance video shows the family sneak the boy out of the hospital without doctors’ approval.
UNM Police did not say what brought Joshua Brown, 7, into the hospital, but they do say that it was not safe for him to head out.
“For the child’s safety, for the child’s care… that’s what our main focus is,” said Lt. Tim Stump with UNM Police.
Lt. Stump said Joshua’s father, 51-year-old Jeffery Brown, is accused of taking Joshua out of the hospital around 5 p.m. on Wednesday while the boy still had a PICC, a peripherally inserted central catheter, inside him.
“According to the doctors, it is attached close to the heart and it’s prone to blood clots,” Lt. Stump said. “Without the proper removal and proper care, it could be life threatening.”
Lt. Stump said Joshua’s dad was not happy with the medical care doctors provided.
Surveillance video shows him talking animatedly with hospital staff.
Police said the staff was explaining that Joshua couldn’t leave yet.
“The child’s not leaving and he replied, ‘He’s already gone,’” Stump said.
A look at the surveillance video shows 20 minutes before the conversation, a guy and a girl, who police believe may be Joshua’s siblings, walk out a side exit with a young boy wrapped in a jacket.
“Some other siblings took the child out to a playground area and disappeared,” Stump said.
About a half hour later, Jeffery and a woman police could not identify also walked out.
“Our hope was that maybe he just went to another hospital, but we have several in the area and that is not the case at this time,” Stump said.
UNM Police said it was working on an arrest warrant for the father for child abuse or endangerment.
Police said Jeffrey does not have a criminal past.
Police are not sure where the father lives. An address linked to Jeffery Brown led police to a storage shed.
Joshua is described as white male who is four feet tall with brown hair.
Doctors just want to make sure the boy is safe and receives proper medical treatment.
If you have any information about Joshua’s whereabouts, contact UNM Police at (505) 277-2241.
Stick with KRQE News 13 for updates on this story.