OCALA, Fla. -- Police in Florida say a 28-year-old father was arrested on suspicion of leaving his three children alone in a car for four hours while he drank in a bar.
Officers say they arrested Joshua Delong early Thursday morning on three counts of child neglect after he was found beaten and bloody outside Dr. B's Bar at Northeast 8th Place in Ocala.
The children, ages 5, 7, and 8, were not injured. Police say the bar patrons beat Delong after they learned the children were left alone in the car.
Ocala Police say a woman told them she saw the children in the car around 2 a.m. She said they were honking the car horn and calling for their dad. She told police one of the children told her, "Daddy left us here for a long time, and he does it a lot."
The children told Ocala police that they ate dinner with their father and grandmother, and wanted to go home with their dad, who instead drove to the bar and left them alone with the windows up and the keys in the ignition.
The woman's boyfriend, a bouncer at the bar, found Delong who said the children were his, and told police Delong tried to drive off. The security team then stopped him because they thought he was drunk.
A bar patron who was angry about the situation then hit Delong according to police.
Delong told officers several people dragged him out of the bar and beat him.
Delong was arrested and taken to Orlando Regional Medical Center before he was transported to the Marion County Jail.