Ryan Parks, 41, is accused of huffing chemicals with his seven-year-old autistic son in the car.
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. -
A Murfreesboro man is behind bars accused of huffing chemicals with his seven-year-old autistic son in the car.
Forty-one-year-old Ryan Parks is charged with driving under the influence, child abuse and neglect.
Police found Parks Tuesday afternoon passed out behind the wheel of his parked van in the Kroger parking lot on Lascassas Pike. His son was sitting in the backseat.
When police arrived they found Parks' head pressed against the headrest with his van still running.
Officers said he had a can of compressed air, often used to clean electronics, in his hand.
"He was very dazed and uncontrollable," Maj. Clyde Adkison told Nashville's News 2. "The officer noticed a strong odor in the car. He said it gave him a headache. He knew it was a different odor so even the officer knew there was something going on. The odor was still trapped in the car."
The child was taken into custody by the Tennessee Department of Children's Services before being released to his mother.
"He seems to be okay, but he is autistic. He can't tell me how he feels," the boy's mother, who wished not to be identified, told Nashville's News 2.
She continued, "It hurts me more than anything has ever hurt me in my life. I thought he loved him like I did."
The mother said her son had oral surgery early Tuesday and his father had taken him to pick up a prescription when they stopped at the grocery store.
The couple is estranged.
Parks remains in the Rutherford County jail on a $5,000 bond.