Green Oak Township mother faces charges after 9-year-old drives car to dumpster

Neighbor calls 911 to report 9-year-old boy driving vehicle with 5-year-old neighbor in passenger's seat

By Steve Garagiola - Reporter/Anchor
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GREEN OAK TOWNSHIP, Mich. - It happened over the weekend: a young boy went for a short drive with his 5-year-old neighbor as a passenger in Green Oak Township.

He was driving his mother's car along a back road in a mobile home community. It's a private road with basically no traffic.

He drove to the dumpster to throw some trash away and then turned around and went back just a couple hundred yards.

Big deal?

"He's 9 years old. You don't even teach him to drive!" said neighbor Gloria Vaughn, who called the police.

Listen: 911 call on 9-year-old's joyride in Green Oak Township

That's what makes it a big deal and why the mother, 33-year-old Leah Jaglowski, is charged with allowing an unlicensed minor to drive a vehicle with with contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

Vaughn spotted the 9-year-old driver and ended his ride.

"'You get out of this car right now. Get out,' and I sent them both home and I said, 'You go get your mother,' and the first thing she says to me as she's coming back, she says, 'What's your problem?'

I said, 'My problem? Your son's got this car!'" said Vaughn.

The boy's grandmother says he has some experience behind the wheel.

"When he goes to cut the grass, he pulls (the car) out, parks it over on the other side of the street. When the grass is all cut, he backs it in sometimes better than I do," said his grandmother, Karen Beaton.

Vaughn is not impressed.

"But who knows if he wants to go to the store. You know, he'll just take the keys 'cause he can," she said. "So, it had to stop."

Beaton can't believe there are charges.

"It amazes me that this has gone to this extent for just that little trip up to the dumpster and back," she said. "Of course, now it will never happen, he's not even allowed to drive the car out of the driveway."

Police, prosecutors and neighbors all agree that's a good idea.

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