When Montgomery County Pct. 4 Commissioner Metts’ crews have to work on Sorters Road, they always know it’s going to be a challenge because of heavy traffic. This past Thursday, however, an unprecedented challenge arose when a citizen approached the Pct. 4 Deputy Constable assigned to work traffic control.
Deputy Morrow and Pct. 4 Safety Director Gerald Martin were parked near the intersection of Sorters Rd. and Holly Ridge, waiting for the Gradall and other equipment to arrive, when a lady turned in and told them a boy was flagging down cars and asking for water further south on Sorters. She was concerned for his safety. Deputy Morrow immediately went to find the boy and located a 12-year-old who he soon realized was a special needs child. The deputy gave the boy water and MCHD medics responded to make sure he wasn’t in need of medical attention. Deputy Morrow talked with the boy as he attempted to get enough information to determine where the child lived. The seasoned deputy could only get the boy to tell him his first name, so he began calling all of the area schools for autistic children, hoping someone would know the boy and be able to provide more information. Deputy Morrow soon learned the nearest school for autistic children over the age of 10 was in Harris County. He got in touch with Jennifer Dantzler, Executive Director of Including Kids Autism Center in Humble, who dropped everything and rushed to Sorters Rd. to help.
Deputy Morrow said Dantzler managed to get the child’s full name, which allowed the resourceful deputy to proceed with his impromptu informal investigation and eventually find the parents’ names and the boy’s address. MCSO Deputy Wade and another deputy went to the boy’s house, in a neighborhood off of Sorters Rd., where they were greeted by the boy’s younger sister, who woke her mother for them. Turns out, the family had arrived home from a trip very late the night before, and the exhausted mother was sleeping in. She said she’d taken some things from her son the previous day as a punishment and he was upset with her. Police believe the boy woke around daybreak and decided to run away from home, as his unsuspecting mother lay sleeping. By the time Deputy Morrow reached the boy, it appears he was walking back toward his home, on the edge of the dangerous roadway. Thursday was hot and humid, and the boy had likely been outside walking for a couple of hours, Morrow said, which is why he’d become so hot and thirsty that he was further jeopardizing his own safety by trying to stop cars to ask if they had water.
Commissioner Metts was relieved to learn the incident had a happy ending and was thankful it happened on the day he had crews in the area.
“Sorters Road connects FM 1314 with the Kingwood area of Harris County, and it’s a very heavily traveled road, where drivers are often in a hurry, but it’s frightening to think of any child walking along that road alone for many reasons,” Metts said. “This story could have ended very badly. I’m proud of Deputy Morrow, Deputy Wade, and the other county employees involved, and we’re very grateful to Ms. Dantzler for her swift response to lend her expertise and help resolve the situation so quickly.”
Commissioner Metts said Thursday was the first day any of his crews had been assigned to work on Sorters Road since the five-week shut down due to the pandemic.
“It’s difficult to think of what could have happened,” he said. “Everything fell into place just perfectly to keep that young man safe, from the concerned citizen seeing the boy and then stopping, through all of the folks who became involved and returned him home safely. No one can convince me that wasn’t God, and right now, I think most of us could use a reminder like this!”
Pct. 4 Constable Kenneth “Rowdy” Hayden said he was pleased that his partnership with the Commissioner’s Office resulted in the deputy being there to assist the boy in finding his way home.
“Deputy Morrow is an experienced law enforcement officer who used his training to assess the situation and find people who could help,” Constable Hayden said. “We’re here to serve and protect, and on Thursday, that’s exactly what Deputy Morrow did.”
Communications Coordinator, Pct. 4
281-577-8435 office / 936-672-5220 mbl.