Charges: Man leaves young daughter in car with gun; and that's not all
SEATTLE - A 21-year-old man was charged this month with not only pointing a firearm at a man with his 4-year-old daughter in tow, but later leaving the girl in his car alone with the gun.
Rio Cole is accused of second-degree assault and second-degree abandonment of a dependent person for the July 4 series of events.
Officers were called to Martha Washington Park in the Seward Park area about 7:44 p.m. on reports of a man brandishing a gun without provocation, according to charging documents.
A man said that Cole, a man he knew to be "always causing problems," continually stared at him him while intoxicated. Cole's 4-year-old daughter reportedly asked her father to stop what he was doing, according to charging documents. The alleged victim repeatedly asked Cole to stop staring at him because it was scaring him. His pleas, however, prompted Cole to brandish a handgun and point it at the man's chest, saying, "Do you want to get things poppin'?" according to incident reports.
The young girl reportedly screamed for her father to stop.
Cole finally left in his car.
Police determined Cole has previous felony convictions, prohibiting him from possessing a gun.
About an hour later, a woman called police to report a 4-year-old girl was walking down South Bond Street near Beacon Avenue South, car keys in hand, claiming she was left alone in her dad's car and told to stay put, reports indicate.
The woman, failing to find the father, called 911. The girl said she was afraid her father would be mad at her.
When the woman gave responding police the father's name, they recalled he was identified as the same person who pointed a gun in Martha Washington Park an hour earlier.
As the girl tried to climb back into her dad's car, officers found the butt of a .25 caliber semi-automatic handgun protruding from the crack between the driver's seat and seat back, police accounts indicate. It was located within about 2 inches of the girl's reach, according to court documents.
Cops called Child Protective Services and took the girl to the South Precinct station.
Cole then called police about 11:21 p.m. to say his daughter was missing and someone stole his car. Officers found Cole and arrested him, noting that he appeared high or intoxicated.
During an interview, Cole allegedly denied having a gun. He also said he was not responsible for his child, but would no say who was.
The girl was released to her legal guardian, her grandfather. The grandfather reported Cole picked up the girl to take her to watch a movie and see the fireworks.
The girls also reportedly told police, "My daddy isn't being good today. He's been doing bad things all day."
Cole remains jailed on $100,000 bail.
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