HACKETTSTOWN — Parents who left their three children alone overnight, the oldest being just 6 years old, are in custody after trying to elude police serving an immigration warrant.

Working in conjunction with representatives of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, local police went to a home on Main Street to serve an ICE warrant for 30-year-old Luis Frolian Ortega Calle on the morning of June 27. The person who answered the door was a 6-year-old girl, who officers found home alone with her 3-year-old and 9-month-old sisters.

The house was described as being "disheveled and unclean," according to police.

As officers were at the apartment they saw Ortega Calle and 26-year-old Josselyn Eneida DeLeon-Garcia turning onto Main Street from an alleyway near a local bar. When the pair saw the police, they attempted to run back down the alley before officers caught up to them. Police determined the adults had left their children home alone since 11:30 the night before while they went to work.

Ortega-Calle was arrested by ICE officers while the children were taken into the custody of the Division of Child Protection and Permanency. The parents were charged with three counts of second-degree child neglect. DeLeon Garcia was taken to the Warren County Correctional Facility, while Ortega-Calle was taken to the Essex County Correctional Facility.

Sgt. Darren Tynan said it was not known as of Thursday afternoon whether the two were married. With both parents in custody, Tynans said it will be up to child protection to determine what will happen to the children.

And while some towns have announced that they will not help enforce immigration warrants, Tynan said that is not the case with Hackettstown.

"As of now, if they request our assistance we will provide them with our assistance if we're available," he said.

Tynan added that it "doesn't happen on a regular basis," and that "most times they will handle it themselves."

The Townsquare News Network did not know as of Thursday afternoon whether DeLeon Garcia or Ortega-Calle had attorneys who could speak on their behalf.

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