A father in Hartford said he searched frantically for his two young children after school.
Brandon Jackson said he called the people at Sarah Rawson Elementary School to say he was late picking them up his sons Tuesday, but he said the school let them walk right out.
"I was a nervous wreck," Jackson said.
On Wednesday night, Jackson said he spent three hours in a panic when he couldn't find his sons, 8-year-old Nasir and 5-year-old Zaire.
The distance from the Sarah Rawson Elementary School to Jackson's apartment is about two miles. Eyewitness News walked it and determined it's a straight shot. However, a person will have to walk across several streets.
"If I would have lost my kids, I would have been a mess," Jackson said.
The kids get out at Sarah Rawson Elementary School around 3:45 p.m. Jackson said he called the office to tell them he was running late.
Jackson said they told him the kids would be watched in the cafeteria. About half an hour later, they weren't there. Jackson ran through the school, announcements were made, but still no sign of his sons.
"I thought they were gone," Jackson said. "I didn't know what else to do. I was lost."
The boys told Eyewitness News they were never told their dad was running late and so they decided to walk home themselves.
"I just told my brother to keep on going, just don't give up," Nasir said.
Jackson called the police and his family. They spread out all over to search.
"Please, please let my kids be found," Jackson said recalling the moment.
Turns out, Nasir remembered the route he walks with his grandfather almost every day and made it back with his brother in tow. They were found in a park near their house more than three hours later.
"When my dad and my grandma and my mom hugged me. I started to cry a little," Nasir said. He added he cried because he was hungry and missed his family.
Eyewitness News contacted Hartford Public Schools about the incident and they released a statement to the station on Wednesday.
"I can tell you that this matter is being actively investigated and dismissal protocols at the school are being reviewed," said David Medina, who is a spokesman for Hartford Public Schools. "We take incidents such a this very seriously."
Jackson said couldn't shake off his fear even after he found his kids. He's so angry, he kept his kids home on Wednesday.
"You just let them walk out of school, you just let them walk by their selves."
Jackson said he plans on moving his children out of the Sarah Rawson Elementary School permanently.
Copyright 2013 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
Sunday, August 31 2014 3:28 PM EDT2014-08-31 19:28:29 GMT
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