Child nearly drowns off Olcott Beach after wandering into water while father is asleep

Posted at 2:46 PM, Oct 11, 2018

A 4-year-old child nearly drowned off of Olcott Beach around 8 a.m. Thursday morning after wandering outside of her home while her father was asleep, according to the Niagara County Sheriff's Office.

A call came in to the Niagara County Communications Center reporting a young girl appeared to be drowning in Lake Ontario off of Olcott Beach near Krull Park.

When Deputy J. Vosburgh responded, the child was seen 50-60 yards off of the shore and looked to be taken farther out by the current.  The child went under the water three times right before the deputy reached her and brought her back to shore.

No parent was able to be located at the time of the rescue.  Shortly afterward, police found the child's residence on Main Street.  The door was open and the child's father, Joshua A. Wankasky, 34, was found sleeping.

Wankasky, who is from Olcott, has been charged with Endangering the Welfare of a Child.  He was released on an appearance ticket.  He's scheduled to appear in court on November 6th.

The child was conscious and breathing when she made it to shore, but was taken to Children's Hospital for further evaluation.

7Eyewitness News will update this story as it continues to unfold.

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