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The Ocala Star-Banner
BY AUSTIN L. MILLER, STAR-BANNER
Published: Sunday, April 20, 2008 at 6:30 a.m. Last Modified: Sunday, April 20, 2008 at 12:29 a.m.
BELLEVIEW A woman whose children sought help from neighbors after she apparently mixed alcohol with medications and drove a car into a ditch outside her home was charged by deputies with two counts of child neglect.
According to a Sheriff’s office report, a neighbor told officials that around 8:30 p.m., the children of Roseann Mary Pallotta, ages 4 and 10, came to her home crying. One of them told her they watched their mother get into a car, reportedly to go find her fiance, and then drove it into a ditch.
The neighbor said she and her roommate went to the car and found Pallotta behind the wheel, talking to herself. They pulled Pallotta, 38, from the car and took her inside her home and placed her on a couch.
They took the children to their home and fed them. According to the report, one of the children told the neighbor, “Mommy is acting mean again because she’s not supposed to drink with her medicine.”
In the meantime, Deputy Michael Paasche had gone to Pallotta’s home in Belleview because of a 911 hang up.
Paasche said he knocked on the front door several times, but got no response. He looked through a window and noticed someone lying on the couch. As the official knocked more loudly, Pallotta got up and opened the door.
Paasche said he detected the odor of alcohol. Pallotta told the deputy she was fine and was with her two children.
Pallotta gave Paasche permission to search the home. When they couldn’t find the children, the deputy said Pallotta began to cry and said her fiance had taken them. The deputy called the man, but was told the children were not there.
On the kitchen counter were multiple medications, including Effexor and Seroquel, along with a bottle of vodka. Pallotta told the deputy the medications belonged to her, and she had taken some with alcohol.
Paasche placed Pallotta in his patrol vehicle and went next door in search of the children.
Pallotta was arrested and taken to the Marion County Jail. The Department of Children and Families was notified and the children were placed in their grandfather’s care.
Austin L. Miller may be reached at email@example.com or 867-4118.