Friday, November 19, 2010

Dad accused of locking son in basement speaks out (Mt. Vernon, Illinois)

Where is this boy's mother???

After wading through dad ROBERT JOHNSON's self-serving excuses as to how authorities found his teen son locked in the basement (and boy, was my BS barometer ticking fast as I read his account), I noticed there is a reference to his "girlfriend," but not to a mom. In fact, there is NO mention of a mom. Is this a custodial dad? Sure sounds like it. If so, I wonder how jailer daddy got custody?


Father Accused Of Locking Son In Basement Speaks Out

MT. VERNON -- Robert Johnston's life has been turned upside down. His 14 year old son, Brock, was taken away from him on March 31st. That's when Jefferson County Sheriff's Deputies found Brock locked in his room with no windows, no bathroom and no way out.

Worse yet authorities say Brock was forced to use a bucket to relieve himself. An allegation Johnston whole heartedly refutes.

"I can't even imagine that someone would believe that I would do something like that," said Johnston, who starts trial next week.

In an exclusive interview with News Three, Johnston calls it a misunderstanding. He says his son was never in danger.

In March the family converted the basement into a bedroom for Brock.

"He just thought it was the greatest thing, you know we were talking together as if this was his own apartment," Johnston said.

Going back to that day Johnston says it was a series of misunderstandings. He admits one entrance to his son's room was boarded up because he says the door would hit his truck when it was opened. He also admits the second door was locked. Though he couldn't go into details as to why, only saying he's not sure how it happened.

Sheriff's Deputies were called to the home in rural Mt. Vernon around noon that day when a neighbor reported Brock was locked in the basement. While Johnston says it's being blown out of proportion, authorities say it is a clear case of criminal restraint.

Since that day, Johnston's girlfriend Angela Toland has given birth to the couple's first son Brody. The two hope to soon get married and for Brock to return home.

"I'm absolutely convinced that I am a good father, my son knows that," Johnston said, "my child needs to be returned to our family so that we can just continue on and learn and grow together."

Johnston's trial starts on Tuesday, if convicted he could face up to six years in prison.

His girlfriend, Toland is also charged in this case. She's due back in court for a pre-trial next month