A man accused of leaving his son and cousin at home alone pleaded not guilty to a reckless conduct charge Wednesday in Columbus Recorder’s Court.
Robert Shoffler, 35, was taken into custody about 5:40 p.m. Monday after his 8-year-old son and 7-year-old nephew were found outside their Huffman Drive home. Judge Mary Buckner set bond at $1,500 and bound the charge over to State Court. After explaining to Buckner that he has custody of his child and his sister’s son, Shoffler was allowed to be released from the Muscogee County Jail on his own recognizance.
Police Officer Misty Boyette said the boys were left at the home alone and it had happened many times. On Monday, the boys had been inside the house but went outside and locked the keys inside.
Boyette said the boys had no phone number to call Shoffler if they needed him at the house. Shoffler was on the north end of Veterans Parkway at a job when the boys were locked outside the house.
On the same day the suspect was charged, two staffers from the Muscogee County School District had been to the house and a report also was made to the Department of Family and Children Services.
Shoffler , who was represented by public defender Charles Lykins, said he works in Atlanta but the company wasn’t busy so he found a job with another company in Columbus.