A father and a mother who tried to give their two sons away in exchange for drugs or cash in Lancaster pleaded no contest on Friday to a felony count of attempted child abandonment, officials said.
Vincent Calogero, 38, and Sarah Nilson, 32, were arrested in a residential area of Lancaster after they attempted to sell their children for money or drugs on Dec. 14, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
The boys, ages 1 and 2, were put into the custody of the county Department of Children and Family Services, officials said.
Calogero and Nilson had kept their children in unsafe conditions and offered them to several strangers, according to a prosecutor.
The circumstances that led to the call alerting authorities about the parents were unclear, but a sheriff’s news release said detectives “would like to commend the residents of Lancaster who intervened in response to the danger the children were in.”
The parents, who initially pleaded not guilty, have been ordered to complete a yearlong program for drug abuse and parenting, according to a statement from the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.
The felony charge may be reduced to a misdemeanor if Calogero and Nilson finish the program and obey all laws and family court orders before the scheduled sentencing on June 27, 2019, the District Attorney’s Office said.